Niger Delta may stop oil companies from carrying out production activities in their domains if the National Assembly failed to reverse the newly passed Petroleum Industry Bill that cut revenue allocation to host communities, Edwin Clark, former minister and leader in the region has warned.
Clark on Monday described the bill passed last week as “satanic and unjust” after the Senate and the House of Representatives significantly reduced proposed revenue to oil-producing communities from the proposed 10 percent to three percent, but handed a relatively far higher 30 percent for oil prospecting in areas listed as “frontier basins”, mostly in the Northern region of the country.
“We want to warn seriously, that the people of the Niger Delta have had enough of this colonial and oppressive mentality of our Northern brothers and friends. Today, the North controls the oil sector, even though day-to-day operations are being handled by the international oil companies (IOCs) on behalf of the Federal Government of Nigeria,” Clark said. He, on behalf of the region, rejected the three percent and five percent of NNPC Limited profit granted to the host communities, urging federal lawmakers to revise the bill and pass the appropriate version.
“If this is not done, the Niger Delta people may be forced to take their destiny into their own hands and all IOCs may find themselves denied access to their oil activities in such communities,” he said at a press conference.
Ijaw Nation Insists On 10%, Rejects 3%, 5% Meanwhile, the Ijaw people have rejected the three and five percent allocated to host communities in the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) passed by the National Assembly.
They insisted on the minimum of 10 percent which the oil-bearing communities demanded when the National Assembly conducted public hearings on the PIB before passage.
President of the Ijaw National Congress (INC), Prof. Benjamin Okaba, made the position of the Ijaw nation known during a press conference at the Ijaw House, Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, on Monday. Okaba described the proposed three and five percent as “Greek gift”.