By Haruna Salami
The leaders of host communities (HOSTCOM) producing oil and gas in Nigeria have debunked media reports that the 3% allocation for host communities in the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) has been reduced .
One of the national dailies had on Tuesday this week, reported that the 3% operational cost oil companies in host communities expected to be remitted into Host Communities Development Trusts, had been reduced.
However, the National President of Host Communities of Nigeria producing oil and gas, Dr. Benjamin Tamaranebi, debunked the report in Abuja on Friday.
The HOSTCOM leader who reacted to the report in a statement read at a Press conference, said the report was planted in the media by those not happy with progress being made on implementation of provisions of the Act by the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) in collaboration with leaders from the various host communities.
The statement titled “Re-Host communities kick as proposed PIA review ‘shrink 3% allocation”, reads: “Our attention has been drawn to Tuesday 24th October 2023 guardian newspaper on the above mentioned topic and we, the mouth piece of all host and impacted communities of oil and gas frown at this publication with distain.
“The Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) 2021 is a public document. All the Regulations enacted by the Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) are in furtherance of the provisions of the Act.
“It is public knowledge, which can be attested to by the relevant stakeholders that all regulations issued by the Commission derive from stakeholder consultations.
“The Host Communities Development Trust (HCDT) was deliberately created to address the concerns of the host communities and stop the activities of the Shylocks and their collaborators.
“The NUPRC as the regulator is putting everything in place so that the overall intendment of the PIA on this score is effectively realised for the benefit of those envisaged.
“We are therefore not surprised that those not happy with progress being made on implementation of provisions of the Act , are fighting back, using every available means, including trying to confuse and deceive members of the public with concocted narratives but we are not going to be swayed by their mischief”.