Senator representing Oyo Central Senatorial district, Teslim Folarin, has advocated for the full implementation of Nigeria’s local content act as a way of driving the economy in a manner that Nigerians would take ownership of critical sectors of the economy.
Speaking with journalists in Abuja on the lead debate on ‘Nigerian Local Content Development Enforcement Bill”, which he sponsored and had passed second reading in the Senate, the lawmaker said the lack of implementation of the local content act has continued to deny Nigerians in playing key roles in the oil and gas sector.
Senator Folarin who is the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Local Content, said the bill which he introduced would transform Nigeria into an industrial hub of the African continent, while expressing optimism that it would pass the third reading.
According to him, Nigeria’s oil and gas sector has not witnessed the implementation of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development (NOGICD) Act which was passed into law about 10 years ago, a situation he said necessitated the “Nigerian Local Content Development Enforcement Bill”, which will have the capacity to generate major gains in the oil and gas industry.
“This bill was structured to introduce procedures that would achieve major gains in local content implementation in the oil and gas sector as well as other sectors of the economy.
He further explained that government was over burdened with so many agencies which it relied upon for the implementation of the act, but were unfortunately, not giving out their best.
Meanwhile, the bill which was seen by DAILY POST made a provision for the Vice President to head the Local Content Development Committee, who will drive policy direction on local content.
The bill also placed responsibility for the implementation of the local content particularly in the area of policies formulation in the hands of ministers as well.
On the public procurement, the lawmaker said the Public Procurement Policy would be fully observed to make local content compliance, a requirement for granting of Certificate of No Objection to procuring entities.
He said, “Each sector will be required to set local content targets in its procurement of goods, services and manpower and this will be well reflected in procurement planning, advertisement, bid evaluation and vendor selection.
“Approvals for award of contracts by the Federal Executive Council will upon enactment of the Bill require a Nigerian Content Compliance Certificate,” he added.