The Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) has scaled first reading in the Senate. The bill, entitled “Petroleum Industry Bill, 2020,’’ was sponsored by Senate Leader, Yahaya Abdullahi (Kebbi North).
President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday transmitted the Bill to the National Assembly for consideration and passage.
Senate President Ahmad Lawan directed Acting Clerk of the Senate, Dauda Ibrahim El-Ladan, to ensure a copy of the Bill is given to each Senator in preparation for the second reading of the Bill next week.
Lawan and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, at the weekend pledged to break the jinx that had militated against passage of the Bill after several attempts by the National Assembly.
While the Senate President said the lawmakers needed to understand the Bill to ease its passage, the Speaker said the National Assembly would not sacrifice thoroughness on the altar of speed.
Minister of State for Petroleum, Timipre Sylva, said that contrary to reports, the new PIB seeks to commercialise the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) rather than abolish it.