Oscarline Onwuemenyi 04 Juy 2017, Sweetcrude, Abuja – The Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, PENGASSAN, has rejected the recent amendment to the Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas, NLNG, Act by the House of Representatives, with a warning that an amendment of the Act was inimical to the growth of Nigeria LNG Limited and the country at large.
The association urged the President Muhammadu Buhari administration to implement the Gas Master Plan effectively rather than amending the NLNG Act.
Speaking during the association’s 5th Triennial National Delegates’ Conference in Abuja, President of PENGASSAN, Comrade Olabode Johnson, who presented the union position, said the Gas Master Plan initiated by the Goodluck Jonathan government can optimise Nigeria’s gas resource potential, end gas flaring and bring gas revenue earnings.
The PENGASSAN President said, “As much as we recognise the importance of reorganising the gas sub-sector and the fact that the Nigerian Liquefied Gas (NLNG) is among the Nigerian companies in the Oil and Gas Sector sustaining the national economy and boosting employment in Nigeria, we are not in support of the recent amendment of NLNG Act, as such amendment will be inimical to the growth of both the organisation and the country.”
He added that, “As social partner and major stakeholder in the sector, we can attest that instead of the amendment, the Gas Master Plan unveiled under former President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, be given proper implementation. This can optimise the Nigeria’s gas resource potential, end gas flaring in the country and bring gas revenue earnings to level up with that of crude oil.”
On the issue of refineries, he expressed support for the government’s initiative to bring in investors to revamp the refineries in the area of funding and expertise.
However, the PENGASSAN President demanded an access to the Federal Government/Investors Memorandum of Understanding, MOU, for the three refineries in Port Harcourt, Warri and Kaduna.
“In addition, we also seek that PENGASSAN and NUPENG should be carried along at all stages of the process to ensure that Labour-related issues and job security is guaranteed. While we await the direction of the investor in the three refineries, we call on the government to ensure immediate rehabilitation of obsolete equipment in the plants,” he said
Comrade Johnson commended the passage of the Petroleum Industry Government Bill, PIGB, by the Senate, thereby breaking the jinx that had bedevilled the passage of the bill for the past 17 years.
However, the union called on the National Assembly to expend more energy in ensuring that the remaining parts of the original Petroleum Industry Bill, PIB, are passed to make Nigeria enjoy optimal benefit from its hydrocarbon resources.