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PIB: Scrapping NNPC Not Appropriate — Expert

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Prof. Wumi Iledare, a professor of Petroleum Economics, says that using the word scrap to describe the reform of NNPC in the new Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) is inappropriate.
Iledare said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), in Abuja on Tuesday.
He said that the proposed new national oil company in the PIB seemed more of a rebranding of the existing one.
“Using the word scrapped to describe the proposition on NNPC is inappropriate. It is more a rebranding than scrapping.
“The new NNPC as a limited liability corporation is not a new thing with respect to transformational thinking for national oil companies.
“There are examples worldwide BP, STATOIL, ENI, TOTAL, and so on.
“But let us see the details in comparison to what the 8th NASS did in 2018 with respect to the PIGB,” he said.
NAN recalls that the President of Senate, Sen. Ahmed Lawan, on Sept. 28, confirmed receipt of the new PIB as an Executive bill.
He assured that the assembly would provide the oil industry with a legislation that would make it more effective and efficient at the end of the day.
“We are glad that the bill is now in the National Assembly, although not before the national assembly,” Lawan had said.
Also, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, had said that the new PIB draft sought to commercialise and not to scrap the NNPC.
Iledare, further commenting on the recommendations for the regulatory agencies in the sector, said that the idea to create different regulators for upstream, midstream and downtrend was a remarkable one.
“Regarding the other regulatory institutions in the proposal, I certainly have no problems with separating downstream regulatory institution from upstream.
“The challenge is getting the competent workforce required and how to avoid the tendency of government coming up with unfitting mode in recruitment.
“But let us see the details for substantive comments,” he added.
NAN also reports that Sylva while meeting with leadership of NASS, said the new bill would bring transformation in the midstream sector.
“If you are talking about transforming the industry, the only new thing that we are introducing is the development of the midstream, that is the pipeline sector,” he said.
He added that via the PIB, the industry would be transformed, the Petroleum Equalisation Fund (PEF), and the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), would not exist in the same form that they are.(NAN)

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Access Bank Announces N50b Interest-free Loan For Businesses

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Access Bank has announced N50 billion in support of Nigerians through interest-free loans and grants to support communities, the youths as well as micro, small and medium-sized businesses.
The bank posted this on its official LinkedIn page.
It said the move was to support businesses following the crippling COVID-19 lockdown as well as the looting and arson that trailed the #ENDSARS protests.
According to the bank; “Now more than ever, we remain committed to our purpose of impacting lives positively.
” In light of the recent occurrences, we will be supporting Nigerian businesses with N50billion interest-free loans and grants. Watch this space for more information.”
The support by Access Bank is expected to help business owners and entreprenuers alleviate and stimulate economic activities, as well as produce many positive multiplier effects on the economy.
“As a way of supporting SMEs and the working class of the country following the recent damage of properties and livelihoods experienced across the nation, @myaccessbank has rolled out interest free loans of up to N50bn.
“The fund is expected to serve as a kickstart to these affected communities, people and businesses. #AccessCares #All4One,” the bank added.

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PenCom Makes Data Recapture Exercise Condition To Process RSA Transfer Request

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The National Pension Commission said the completion of the Data Recapture Exercise (DRE) is a prerequisite for processing any Retirement Savings Account (RSA) transfer request by RSA holders who registered before 1st of July 2019.
“The National Pension Commission (the Commission) introduced the Data Recapture Exercise (DRE) in August 2019 in order to obtain complete, accurate and current data of all RSA holders (both active and retired), the commission stated.
The statement added that “Accordingly, Pension Fund Administrators (PFAs) were directed by the Commission to obtain the relevant information required for the DRE from RSA holders and the process is on going. One of the information required for the exercise is the National Identity Number (NIN).
“The Commission is desirous to ensure that all RSA holders are able to exercise their rights of transferring their RSAs trom one PFA to another, in anticipation of the formal launch of the RSA Transfer System during the last quarter of 2020.
“The Commission therefore wishes to notify all RSA holders that the completion of the DRE is a prerequisite for processing any RSA transfer request by RSA holders who registered before 1 July 2019.”
PenCom explained to fast track the DRE, it approved a proposal of the Pension Operators’ Association of Nigeria (PenOp) for an industry Shared Service Initiative (SSI).
“Consequently, PenOp has engaged agents to conduct the DRE on behalf of all PFAs. This arrangement will enhance efficiency in carrying out the exercise as it would allow an agent to recapture all RSA holders in the same organization on behalf of all PFAs. In partnership with the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), the selected agents will have the ability to carry out NIN registrations seamlessly.
“The Commission hereby appeals to all active RSA holders and retirees to cooperate with the agents that would be visiting their organisations to carry out the DRE. Meanwhile, the Commission remains committed to providing necessary support to the pension industry to ensure the success of the DRE,” it noted.

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Senate Confirms Dahir-Umar DG PenCom, Four Board Members

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The Senate confirmed the appointment of Mrs. Aisha Dahir-Umar as the substantive Director General of the National Pension Commission (PenCom) on Tuesday.

President Muhammadu Buhari had penultimate week, sent the name of Dahir -Umar to the Senate, seeking the lawmakers ’ confirmation for her to be the substantive DG and others , to the board of the agency.

The lawmakers also confirmed Dr Oyindasola Oluremi Oni, from North Central as the Chairman of the commission.
Also confirmed were Clement Akintola (South -West); Ayim Nyerere ( South – East) and Charles Emukowhale (South – South), as commissioners of the PenCom board.
However, the Senate refused to confirm the appointment of Hannatu Musa (North -West) because she was unable to present her discharge certificate from the National Youths Service Corps.
Until her confirmation, Dahir-Umar , from the North -East geopolitical zone , held the position in acting capacity .

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