Planned NLNG Act’s Amendment Causes Stir

Planned NLNG Act’s Amendment Causes Stir

It was time to debate the proposed bill for an amendment of the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Act before the National Assembly at a forum organised by energy reporters in Lagos. The bill seeks to compel the NLNG to pay three per cent of its yearly budget to the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC). Will the amendment be carried? EMEKA UGWUANYI, AKINOLA AJIBADE and AMBROSE NNAJI report.

It was a no-holds-barred argument involving oil and gas industry stakeholders and a member of the House of Representatives, Simon Yakubu Arobo, on the proposed amendment to the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Act. A bill, which is before the National Assembly, was on whether the amendment would be in the interest of Nigerians, or it would strangle the goose that lays the golden egg.

It all happened at a forum organised by the Association of Energy Correspondents of Nigeria. The controversy over the amendment started in  February, last year, when Senator Patrick Nwaoboshi alleged that the NLNG had refused to pay its NDDC levy since it started commercial operation 16 years ago.  By that action, he claimed, the company had broken the law.

Not long after Nwaoboshi’s statement, the House of Representatives backed his proposal for the NLNG’s (fiscal incentives, guaranteed and assurances) Act, Cap N87 of 2004 amendment. The 2004 Act exempts the NLNG from paying the NDDC levy.

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