By Modupe Gbadeyanka
The Federal Government has debunked reports that it has decided to do away with the NNPC, DPR, PPPRA, and others.
A statement issued by the Director of Press and Public Relations in the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Mr Idang Alibi, explained that a final decision was yet to be taken on the creation of a single regulatory agency for the petroleum industry to be known as Petroleum Regulatory Commission.
Mr Alibi said the media reached a misleading conclusion quoting from the provisions of the draft National Oil Policy and the draft National Gas Policy widely in circulation.
He added that the draft National Gas Policy was still undergoing deliberations and debates, noting that after these steps, the government can then reach a final decision by the appropriate organ of the Federal Government.
Mr Alibi said, “The Ministry of Petroleum Resources wishes to state that no final decision has yet been taken on the idea of scrapping the NNPC and other parastatals and agencies of the petroleum sector mentioned in the stories.”
He explained that the “ideas contained in the two key draft policy documents which media of mass communication and stakeholders have, remain tentative.”
Mr Alibi explained further that, “They will become policy plans of government only after they undergo the necessary processes.”
“We invite the media and other stakeholders to note that boldly written on the two documents is the word DRAFT and as we all know, a draft is a document that is subject to further amendments, reviews or even rejection. By sounding as if those draft documents are definitive, the media are unwittingly seeking to pre-empt the processes which they must undergo before they become authentic plans of government,” he said.
“We wish to let Nigerians and concerned stakeholders know that from the 16th to 17th November, 2016, a stakeholders’ consultation meeting has been scheduled to take place at the PTDF Corporate Headquarters Office in Abuja on the draft National Oil Policy and draft Gas Policy to robustly debate the ideas contained in them.
“Even when they have been thoroughly debated, nothing definitive can be said yet as the outcome of this two-day meeting will be presented to the highest decision-making body in the country, the Federal Executive Council (FEC}, for consideration. It is only the pronouncement of the FEC that will make the draft become policy and working documents for the Ministry of Petroleum Resources to reform the petroleum sector.
“For the avoidance of doubt, we wish to reiterate the fact that what the media and many others now have are a draft policy on oil and gas and are meant to sensitize Nigerians and other key stakeholders on some of the policy options being mooted to rejig that critical sector.
“It is after the FEC has deliberated on the matter that the nation will have a definitive policy on how to reform the sector and what needs to be done to achieve that objective,” Mr Alibi said in the statement.
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