PIB: Host Communisties warns FG on 2.5 percent equity

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PIB: Host Communisties warns FG on 2.5 percent equity

Host Communities Producing Oil and Gas (HOSTCOM) have again kicked against the 2.5 percent equity shareholding recommended for oil impacted communities in the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB), insisting that anything short of their initial demand for 10 percent would be stoutly rejected and could be a recipe for renewed militancy in the Niger Delta.

National President of HOSTCOM, High Chief (Dr) Benjamin Style Tamanarebi, disclosed this in a statement Sunday in Abuja, saying indications point to the fact that the federal government is not interested in the passage of the bill because of lack of sincerity.

According to Tamanarebi, the statement is an executive summary of the joint committee on PIB town hall meetings between the National Assembly and the Government of the States, stakeholders and Host Communities Producing Oil and Gas that took place from 1st to 5th March, 2021.

He said the Niger Delta militants have been calm because of the high expectation that the HOSTCOM will secure the 10% equity in the PIB to at least atone for the monumental degradation of their environment.

According to him, it is in the interest of all stakeholders that the federal government stopped treating the Niger Delta with kids gloves as it may boomerang.

In the executive summary that was jointly signed by the National President and chairmen of the nine State chapters of the HOSTCOM, they reiterated their position to stand by the On-shore Host Communities so defined as “Host and directly impacted Communities 50km radius of the Project site which includes pipelines”.

They want Part 111. Sections 3,4,5, which said, the Commission shall not undertake both commercial and regulatory activities at the same time and should not tamper with federation account funds such as the proposed 10% of rents on petroleum licences and petroleum mining leases which are usually in dollars to be expunged.

They demanded that the Governing Board be expanded to accommodate each of the Producing States and HOSTCOM representatives.

“The Governing Board of the Authority should also be expanded to accommodate each of the Producing States and HOSTCOM representatives.”

On Section 47, which deals with Funding of the Authority: they want the proposed 1% to be expunged since the National Assembly appropriates funds to the Authority on a first line charge in addition to four other sources of funds.

They also want the Midstream Gas Infrastructure Fund contained in Section 52 to be expunged and the Location of the Headquarters (HQ) of the Authority to be in the major Petroleum Producing States.

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