02 April 2014, Abuja – The Federal Government has opened negotiation with the organised labour on the proposed privatisation of the nation’s four refineries.
The Head, Public Communications, Bureau of Public Enterprises, Mr. Chigbo Anichebe, confirmed this in a telephone interview with our correspondent on Tuesday.
The refineries are the Port Harcourt Refining Company Limited I and II; Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company Limited; and Warri Refining and Petrochemical Company Limited.
Although BPE had listed the sale of the four refineries on its work list for 2014, which was recently approved by the National Council on Privatisation, our correspondent learnt that the sale would not happen except the government secured a buy-in from the organised labour.
President Goodluck Jonathan had in December 2013 approved the constitution of a steering committee for the privatisation process.
The members of the steering committee, chaired by the Minister of Petroleum Resources, include the ministers of Finance, Power, Labour and Productivity, National Planning, Mines and Steel Development and Justice/Attorney-General of the Federation.
Others are the Chairman, Extractive Sub-committee of the NCP; Special Adviser to the Vice President on the Economy; Group Managing Director, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation; Director-General, BPE; Group Executive Director (Refineries), NNPC; managing directors of the refineries; and Director, Oil and Gas, BPE, who was slated to serve as the secretary.
The terms of reference of the steering committee include advising the NCP on the best way to privatise the refineries in a manner that will enhance the gains of the privatisation programme; and reviewing the diagnostic reports and recommendations of the transaction advisors.
Others are to propose modalities and make recommendations to the NCP on labour matters to ensure the successful privatisation of the refineries; to oversee the process and make recommendations to the council for the successful privatisation of the refineries; and to carry out any other ancillary activities relevant to the attainment of the goals of the Federal Government in the reforms and privatisation of the nation’s refineries.
– The Punch