THE Nigeria Natural Resource Charter, NNRC, a not-for-profit policy institute and OrderPaper Advocacy Initiative, OAI, are set to host key players in Nigeria’s petroleum sector to promote reforms and secure benefits for the country.
The event, organized by the Nigeria Natural Resource Charter, NNRC, and its partner is billed to take place on April 29 in Lagos.
In a joint press statement issued by Tengi George-Ikoli, program coordinator, NNRC and Oke Epia, executive director, OAI, on Thursday they disclosed that the conference would be centred on the implications of not embracing reforms in the petroleum sector.
“Concerns have continued to mount over prevailing uncertainty around the stalemated reforms in oil and gas industry, which many believe, has a negative impact on the economy with increasing investor flight and a continually dwindling resource base for Nigeria,” the statement reads.
The conference, an off-shoot of the Development Dialogue Series (DDS) of OrderPaper Advocacy, a non-governmental organisation, focused on policy and legislative engagements that seeks to promote good governance and instituting democratic practices in Nigeria.
“It is against the backdrop of the ding-dong affair between the National Assembly and President Muhammadu Buhari on the Petroleum Industry and Governance Bill (PIGB) which was recently passed again by the former after an initial rejection by the latter.
It will determine ways to engage with the federal government on alternative reforms for the sector,” the statement said.
Representatives from the government, legislature, oil and gas industry executives, the academia, media, and civil society organizations are also expected at the event.
Professor Wumi Iledare, a keynote speaker for the event is the vice president, training, research and development at the International Institute for Petroleum, Energy Law and Policy, IIPELP, at the University of Port Harcourt.
Speakers expected at the event include Dr. Adeoye Adefulu, partner/head, Odujinrin Adefulu’s Energy Practice , Henry Adigun of the Facility for Oil Sector Transformation (FOSTER), Israel Aye, founding and managing partner of Primera Africa Legal, Olufemi Dawole of Depots and Petroleum Products Marketers Association of Nigeria, DAPPMAN, and Joseph Nwaukwe, a renowned expert in the oil and gas sector.
At the press briefing, George-Ikoli emphasised the importance of the petroleum sector and warned against the country’s inability to finance its budget and service its debt which depends on proceeds from oil.
Epia said repositioning the Nigerian economy for recovery, without depending on oil and gas sector remains the key transformative tool for diversification and growth.
Amos Abba is a journalist with the International Center for Investigative Reporting, ICIR, who believes that courageous investigative reporting is the key to social justice and accountability in the society.