The Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC) has been commended over its decision to identify the real owners of all lease and licence holders operators in Nigeria’s oil and gas sector.
In a statement issued in Abuja yesterday, a rights group, Human and Environmental Development Agenda (HEDA Resource Centre), described the regulatory commission’s action as ultimate, noting that, the decision will further promote transparency and accountability in the energy sector in Nigeria.
The statement signed by its chairman, Olanrewaju Suraju, the civil society organisation said it is indeed the way to go given Nigeria’s endorsement of the renowned Open Government Partnership (OGP).
The civil group said it shares a common vision of transparency and accountability with the commission in the energy sector, and charged NUPRC to call on the law enforcement agencies to ensure compliance of operators in providing the required information as directed, and do necessary follow-ups.
Last weekend, Commission issued a seven-day ultimatum for all lease and licence holder operators in Nigeria’s oil and gas sector, to disclose the identity (ies) of the beneficial owner(s), the level of ownership, and details of how control is exerted.
The move, which came on the heels of the recent release of a beneficiary ownership register by the Nigerian Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, and the Corporate Affairs Commission seeking to implement the beneficial ownership reporting system.
The beneficial ownership reporting system is a statutory requirement demanding full disclosure of beneficial ownership information.