The Executive Secretary, Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board, Mr. Simbi Wabote, has said oil and gas companies that fail to comply with the provisions of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development Act will henceforth be dragged before the law courts.
Wabote, according to a statement, stated this at the first national seminar for judges on the role of the judiciary in the development of the Nigerian local content law and policy, organised by the Juris Law Office and the NCDMB in collaboration with the National Judicial Institute in Abuja.
He noted that the NCDMB had used administrative procedures to enforce the Act in the past eight years but would begin to prosecute cases of infringement in line with Section 68 of Nigerian Content Act.
“We are changing gear in the NCDMB from writing letters of non-compliance on infractions to actual prosecution of offenders who think they can trample on the law of the land on local content and get away with it.”
Wabote said the NCDMB delayed the prosecution option because it wanted to fully exploit the alternative dispute resolution methods, develop its operating guidelines and organise capacity building workshops on the Nigeria Content Act for the judiciary.
“After this workshop, we will begin to institute cases in the courts. If we don’t enforce the provisions of the Act, we will not be able to create employment opportunities for Nigerians from the activities in the industry,” he said.
The NCDMB executive secretary explained that most fabrication, engineering and procurement in the oil and gas industry were done abroad prior to the enactment of the NOGICD Act in 2010, resulting in estimated capital flight of $380bn in 50 years.
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