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Stakeholders task government on UN resolutions in oil sector


AFP Photo / Tatyana Makeyeva

AFP Photo / Tatyana Makeyeva

Stakeholders in the oil and gas sector have urged the Federal Government to implement the United Nations (UN) resolutions in the sector, to address restiveness in the Niger Delta region.

This charge was given by the President of International Law Association (ILA), Prof. Fidelis Oditah, at the Third Annual Conference of the ILA, in collaboration with the International Institute for Petroleum Energy Law and Policy (IIPELP).

The theme of the conference was, “Emerging developments in the Nigerian oil and gas sector: International law responses, policy issues and adaptability.”

Oditah said oil and gas accounts for almost 80 per cent of Nigeria’s foreign exchange earnings with a share of 15 per cent to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the country.

According to him: “The International Law Association has no direct role to play in the Nigerian judiciary but it is a forum to investigate issues, which affect the development and interpretation of international law in Nigeria. Some of the issues we discussed today, included resource extraction, governance, etc., and the extent to which we can use international instruments to bring about governance or improve governance in the oil and gas sector.”

Chairperson, Natural Resources Committee of the association, Prof. Yinka Omorogbe, explained: “This event would provide a platform to critically examine and assess the practical application of key international instruments on the extractive sector governance and how emerging legal, policy and other arrangements in Nigeria could be reformed to international norms and best practices.”

In an address titled, “Sustainable development of national energy resources: What has international law got to do with it?” an expert in Public International Law, University of Oxford, United Kingdom, Prof. Catherine Redgwell Chichele, said the bulk of international energy regulation was concerned with harmonising rules and procedures reliant on national implementation, rather than dictating sovereign energy choices.

In his submission, the Chief Executive Officer, IIPELP (Nigeria branch), Dr. Timothy Okon, said there was need to sustain the industry by Nigerians, noting that non-participation by states was a hindrance to the implementation of these laws.

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