Wednesday, October 20, 2021
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NCDMB, EFCC, others to collaborate on local content enforcement

Federal Government agencies including the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC), Nigeria Police, Nigerian Customs Service, and other relevant agencies have united to vigorously pursue the enforcement of Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development (NOGICD) Act.

At a two-day workshop themed, “understanding the objectives and philosophy of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development Act,” in Abuja, the relevant agencies vowed to pursue strict compliance with the policy.

In his welcome address, the Executive Secretary of NCDMB, Simbi Wabote, explained that the Board organised the workshop to create synergy and collaboration with regulatory and enforcement agencies in the discharge of its mandate.

He explained that the workshops held regularly to strengthen collaboration with key stakeholders, particularly those that are not familiar with the Board’s roles in the petroleum industry.

A former Inspector-General of Police, Dr Solomon Arase, in his paper, identified gaps in the provisions of the NOGICD Act that would hamper the successful prosecution and conviction of companies deemed to have breached its the provisions.

He proposed some amendments to the Act such as the explicit definition of offences, expansion of the parties to offences, and stiffer punishment for noncompliance while urging the Board to build a small team of experts, with competences in investigation and identification of ingredients critical for proving cases of noncompliance.

He suggested that the team should include officers of the Nigeria Police, ICPC, EFCC and other relevant agencies, who would be trained on Nigerian Content.

The Director, Legal Services, Umar Babangida, who presented the draft Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development Compliance and Enforcement Regulation 2020, said this is designed to plug some of the gaps that were identified in the NOGICD Act.

He also explained that non-compliance and breach of Nigerian Content guidelines have been categorized into minor and serious infractions.

Minor offences refer to first time defaults, deficits in meeting deadlines for periodic reports and similar defaults and applicable sanctions would include a letter of warning, the invitation of the management team of the operator/stakeholder for corrective dialogue with the Board.

On the other hand, serious infractions include repeated or persistent defaults; and/or deliberate refusal to comply with directives issued by the Board.

“Enforcement and checks can be conducted at various entry points and access points to offshore locations by demanding biometrics identity cards before approving flight requests by expatriates to offshore oil and gas operations,” he said.He also suggested that the Military should collaborate with the Board in deepening R&D and domesticating hardware and software technology, maintenance techniques for military equipment.


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