Governors of the South-South region comprising; Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta, Edo and Rivers states, have made a case for the upward review of oil revenue payments to host communities from 2.5 per cent to 10 per cent.
Ifeanyi Okowa, Delta state governor and chairman of the South-South Forum made this known to newsmen following Monday’s South-South Governors’ meeting held in Port Harcourt, Rivers State capital.
According to Okowa, the current 2.5 per cent stipulated in the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) presented before the National Assembly for the host communities, was insufficient and needs to be reviewed and increased in the best interest of the communities and the nation in general.
“We have discussed with our people and collectively as leaders of the people in our various states and as leaders standing in and on behalf of our people, we urge the national assembly to increase the provision in the host community fund from 2.5 per cent to 10 per cent,” he said.
Okowa added that the host communities are prepared to become watchdogs of oil facilities on behalf of the federal, state governments and oil companies if satisfied with the provision of the trust fund. A peaceful environment in the various oil communities, he noted, would enable greater and seamless production of oil, without any form of disruption going into the future.
The governors also enjoined Muhammadu Buhari, the nation’s president to ensure the required funds and implementations are put in place to facilitate the restructuring of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).