The Petroleum Industry Bill, PIB, on Wednesday passed Second Reading at the Senate. The Bill, which seeks to split the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, into two independent bodies, was referred to the Committee on Petroleum (upstream and downstream) after a brief deliberation.
The Senator representing Ondo Central and Chairman of the Committee on Petroleum, Upstream, Tayo Alasoadura, who led deliberation on the Bill, said the PIB was first introduced in 2008, adding that its passage would address some of the ills in the sector.
Stressing that the Bill is aimed at creating efficient institutions, and to promote transparency in the administration of petroleum resources in the country, Alasoadura noted that the bill was not passed by previous administrations.
He explained that the bill was the first in a series of its kind to reform the petroleum industry.
According to Alasoadura, ”This bill provides for the unbundling of the NNPC into two independent entities, which are the National Petroleum Company (NPC) and National Asset Management Company.
“It also provides for the establishment of a single petroleum regulatory commission which will focus mainly on regulating the industry.
“The poor performance of the NNPC is a major concern. The commercialisation of the corporation and its splitting into two entities is for more efficiency and to enhance performance.”
Earlier, the Senate issued the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, five weeks to conduct National Assembly re-run elections in Rivers State.