The Pan-Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF) has rejected the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) recently passed by the National Assembly.
In an open letter to the leadership of the National Assembly, Edwin Clark, leader of the group described the provisions of the bill which includes 3% and 5% of operating expenditure granted to the host communities, as satanic and unjustly.
“It is important to state clearly here to all well-meaning Nigerians that the demand of the oil bearing communities of the Niger Delta Region was for a minimum of 10% equity participation,” Mr Clark said.
“But you Mr. Senate President, the Right Honourable Speaker and some of your colleagues in the National Assembly, have further shown your disdain to the Niger Delta people by redefining host communities to include pipeline-bearing pathway communities, in which case States where pipelines pass through to aid them with the privilege of cheap supplies of Niger Delta petroleum products could also be entitled to the ridiculous and unacceptable percentages that the legislators are willing to cede to oil-bearing Communities.
“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.”
The nonagenarian threatened that oil companies will experience difficulty operating in the oil-rich region if the bill, which also earmarks thirty per cent of profits for further frontier oil exploration in the north, is not reviewed.
“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 added.