The Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) says it has grown Nigerian content in the oil and gas sector to 42 percent. Mr. Simbi Wabote, Executive Secretary of NCDMB gave the update on Wednesday while speaking at a Local content workshop for the Judiciary in Bayelsa.
The theme of the workshop was: “Philosophy and the imperatives of the Nigerian Oil and Gas industry content development (NOGICD) Act”.
The growth, according to Wabote, translates to the retention of over $8 billion of the $20 billion annual spending in the industry, within the Nigerian economy and is part of the NCDMB’s 10-year plan (2017-2027) to achieve 70 percent by 2027.
The Executive Secretary noted that with less than 5 percent local content before the enactment of the NOGICD Act 2010, Nigerians were reversing the dominance of foreign companies.
He said that currently Nigerian-owned oil companies produced 15 percent of the country’s daily oil output and account for some 60 percent of domestic gas supply.
On ownership of oil and gas industry equipment, Wabote said that available records indicated that 40 percent of vessels deployed in the sector were owned by Nigerians.
The workshop drew participants from the Bayelsa Judiciary, Federal High Court Yenagoa, Nigeria Industrial Court Yenagoa and Port Harcourt Divisions.
Mr. Naboth Onyeso, Head of Legal Services at NCDMB noted that although oil and gas were on the exclusive legislative list, some conflicts arising from the implementation of the NOGICD Act may be brought before the state judiciary.
He said that the NCDMB saw all levels of the judiciary at state and federal levels as critical stakeholders who needed to understand the NOGICD Act. He said that the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) reinforced the NOGICD Act as it complemented the legislation.
Mrs. Kate Abiri, Chief Judge of Bayelsa, who served as a resource person in one of the technical sessions on the; “Role of the Judiciary in attaining the goals of the NOGICD Act” examined all the sections of the Act.
She said a detailed grasp of the contents and intents of the legislation was crucial for the judiciary to give an unbiased interpretation of the law. Senior officials of the NCDMB also presented papers at the technical session on the various aspects of the board’s operations before the audience.
The panel session of the workshop was on the topic: “Challenges of enforcing breaches of the NOGICD Act, The Role of the Bar and the Bench”.
Dr. Pereowei Subai, Head of Department, Property/Private Law, Niger Delta University, served as moderator of the panel session comprising Onyeso of the NCDMB and Prof Solomon Ebobra, Law Faculty of the Niger Delta University.
Other members of the panel were Justice Mohammed Madugu, Judge of Federal High Court, Abuja, and legal practitioners, Inemesit Dike, and Kelvin Ejelonu.