OrderPaperToday – Members of the House of Representatives from the 17 Southern states have endorsed the resolution of the Southern Governors’ Forum (SGF) on the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) and other issues raised recently.
In a statement issued on behalf of the group, the chairman, Victor Nwokolo (PDP, Delta), insisted on electronic transmission of results in place of manual method as canvassed by the governors.
According to him, “this resolution by the Southern governors reinforces our stance, as federal lawmakers, that our nation must and should exist on the pillars of justice equity, fairness, peaceful co-existence and mutual respect, particularly in the political, economic and structural management of our national diversity.
“We note that the demand that the next President of Nigeria should come from the southern region unambiguously represents the opinion of majority of Nigerians across board, in tandem with the already established rotation of presidency position between southern and northern Nigeria.
“Furthermore, against the backdrop of our commitment towards free, fair, credible and transparent elections, the members of the House of Representatives from the South also backs our governors in rejecting the moves to outlaw the electronic transmission of election result in the Electoral Act, as well as the confirmation of exclusive jurisdiction in pre-election matters on the Federal High Court.”
On the PIB, the statement said: “We southern members of the House of Representatives also back our governors in rejecting the proposed 30% share of profit for the exploration of oil and gas in the basins.
“We also reject the moves to vest the ownership structure Nigeria National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC) in the Federal Ministry of Finance and support the governors in their resolve that such should be held in trust by Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) since all tiers of government have stakes in that agency.
“As lawmakers, we insist that the 30% share of profit as well as vesting ownership structure of the proposed NNPC on the ministry of finance instead of the NSIA do not reflect the desired essentials of justice, equity and fairness.
“We however note the support lent by our governors to the 5% share of the oil revenue to host community as recommended by the House of Representatives and we assure that every effort would be made to sustain our position at the harmonization level.”