The Joint committees of the two chambers of the National Assembly (NASS) on Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB), have assured a speedy passage of the bill.
The joint committee made the assurance during a visit they made to the Kaduna Refining and Petrochemical Company (KRPC) on Monday in Kaduna.
During the tour, the Chairman of the Senate Committee on PIB, Sen. Sabo Nakudu, said the NASS was aware of its conditions and other refineries in Nigeria and are working tirelessly on the passage of the PIB.
Nakudu said, “Our role as members of the National Assembly is to support the executive to make sure whatever they want to achieve is being given the required legislative support.
“We don’t have the executive powers to revamp the refineries. Year in and out, every chief executive or minister that comes on board always say they will make the refineries work, but here we are still battling their deplorable state.
Nakudu, however, said they at the national assembly could do nothing, because they were not requested to give any legislative backing or approval to effect the normal working conditions of the refineries.
“The situation of our refineries is terrible, I don’t know if the managing director can explain but I cannot see any light at the end of the tunnel.
“Be that as it may, our reason for being here is that we want to pass the PIB bill, therefore we came to look into the state of our refineries, to collaborate, seek your opinions and views on what legislative inputs you want”.
“As a committee, we are ready and hoping that by the time we pass the bill, the refineries will come back to life”, Nakudu also said.
Also, the Co-Chairman of the PIB Joint Committee at the House of Representatives, Mr Muhammad Mongono, said the PIB passage had been postponed and adjourned for so many times.
“This time around, there is commitment on the part of NASS to make sure the bill is passed, this is borne out of the fact that amendments of our laws concerning oil and gas industries is long overdue,” Mongono said.
He noted that for Nigeria to remain relevant and competitive within the oil industry and for the fact which the world is moving away from fuel to renewable energy, it became an issue of great concern to accelerate quick passage of the bill.
Earlier in his opening remarks, the Managing Director of KRPC, Mr Ezekiel Osarolube, however, said the
nation’s refineries being currently on rehabilitation, initial activities and planning were still going on in the right direction.
Osarolube said the visit by the NASS joint committee on PIB would serve as a morale booster to the members of staff of KRPC who in spite of the numerous challenges sustained operations of the plant up till 2017 when they had a major plant failure.
“The plant again operated for nine days in June 2019 until the available crude oil in the refinery was exhausted,”he said.
The managing director assured the joint committee of his support on the critical national assignment given them toward achieving the set objectives of making KRPC and other refineries work again.