|By Oge Obi
Besides the need for capacity building in relevant areas, government agencies commitment and willingness to strictly adhere to the principles of the nation’s Local Content policy implementation is an important factor in the attainment of measureable policy performance, the chairman, House Committee on Local Content, National Assembly, Hon. Emmanuel Ekon has disclosed.
Speaking during the 2018 the West African International Petroleum Exhibition and Conference, (WAIPEC) in Lagos recently, Ekon warned that Nigeria may be far from realizing her local content policy objectives if those charged with the responsibility of ensuring proper implementation of the policy fail in their oversight function. Adding that what the country needs to enjoy the huge benefits accruable to her and her citizenry from the policy was sincere implementation. “A situation where the regulatory bodies that are supposed to do the right thing are even the one that are infracting the law, it is not going to take us to anywhere,” the Legislator said.
The lawmaker, who called for full implementation of the law, said “If the law is implemented the way it is crafted, I believe we will have fewer issues in our oil and gas sector.” Cautioning against quick gratification strategies allegedly adopted by some local firms against building up and having the needed competencies and capacities, Ekon advised indigenous firms to pay more attention to capacity building rather than focus on how to make quick money.
Speaking further, the House Committee on Local Content warned that, “the fact that we are running local content regime doesn’t meant that we have to patronize incompetents. We need to patronize Nigerian companies, but the demand should be based on competence.”
Earlier in his remarks, the lawmaker commended the organizers – Petroleum Technology Association of Nigeria (PETAN) for their efforts and commitment on how to grow the industry as well as the nation’s economic wellbeing.