PRESS RELEASE

CHRAN Endorses Ibom Oil and Gas Corporation Bill

The Center for Human Rights and Accountability Network (CHRAN) has commended the sponsors of the Bill for a Law to Establish the Ibom Oil and Gas Corporation and for Other Purposes Connected Thereto.

The commendation, which was made by the group during a press briefing organised by the Center on Wednesday, 14th February, 2024 at the CHRAN’s office in Uyo, stated that the Bill was long overdue in the State, which they described as one of the top crude oil producing States in Nigeria.

Speaking at the press briefing, the Director of the Center, Otuekong Franklyn Isong, flanked by the Secretary, Barr Christopher Ekpo, and other members, noted that the Bill, when passed into Law, will position the State in top reckoning as an oil producing State within and outside the country.

CHRAN lauded the Bill on its objectives, which include engaging in oil and gas upstream activities, including exploration, drilling and production; investing for the purpose of participating in oil and gas bid rounds and seeking the allocation of marginal oil fields; acquiring old and new exploration and drilling prospects and prospecting abandoned oil wells in Nigeria and overseas; optimising the benefits of the petroleum policies of the federal government; liaising with federal government agencies or private and multinational companies to deliver petroleum products to the State in the most effective and cost efficient manner; investing in downstream oil and gas activities including gas processing businesses, petroleum products retailing, gas retailing, gas pipelines deployment, acquisition of petroleum products tank farms and other distribution facilities, and investing in refineries, petrochemical processing or other production processes.

CHRAN noted that the Ibom Oil and Gas Corporation, envisaged in the Bill will create employment for the teeming unemployed Akwa Ibom indigenes, generate revenue for the State and serve as a vehicle for economic growth and regeneration while harnessing and consolidating the huge oil and gas potentials of Akwa Ibom State.

The beauty of the Bill, according to CHRAN, is that it is concise and purposeful in that it provides for both upstream and downstream activities by the Ibom Oil and Gas Corporation.  In that wise, the CHRAN believes that the acquisition of petroleum products tank farms and other distribution facilities, envisaged in the Bill, will go a long way to ensure the availability of petroleum products in the State. 

According to the CHRAN, the foresight of the sponsors of the Bill reflects in the provision in the Bill for expansion of the Ibom Oil and Gas Corporation to make for investment in existing companies or consortia and acquisition of old or abandoned oil wells and exploration and drilling facilities in the country and overseas.

The CHRAN advocated for support for the Bill by all members of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, the Executive Arm of the Akwa Ibom State Government and indeed, all Akwa Ibomites to ensure a quick passage of this important Bill and timely assent to the Bill by the Governor of Akwa Ibom State, in due course.

The civil society group commended the lead sponsor of the Bill, Prince Ukpong Akpabio, and the co-sponsors of the Bill: Hon. Sunday Johnny, Rt. Hon. Effiong Johnson, Hon. Udobia Friday, Hon. Nsidibe Akata, Hon. Kenim Onofiok, Hon. Selinah Ukpatu, Hon. Precious Selong, Hon. Uwem Imoh-Ita and Hon. Sampson Idiong.

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