The workshop was about enlightening stakeholders on the new platform and was designed in conjunction with the Central Bank of Nigeria and the Nigerian Content Fund , all the operators, service
providers, The Content Fund had been upgraded and change, so we needed to enlighten them on how to do their remittances, because we realize that the remittances were going down because they didn’t
understand how to use the software and then the second part of the workshop was on Forensic auditing, You know since the inception of the Board in 2010, the Acts mandates operators and contractors in the up stream sectors to pay one percent of every contracts that is awarded to them to the NIGERIAN CONTENT DEVELOPMENT FUND and we have realized that some of them have not been remitting the funds as stipulated by Act so we called them together to enlighten them of ourintent to carry out our forensic audit of all the funds that are out there, so that’s the essence of the workshop, it was well attended ,ninteractions and feedback from the workshop is going to be implemented.
There was this report that some IOCs and even NNPC were breaching the Nigerian Content Act, whats your reaction to this. The Senate is said to be probing this.
The Senate enquiry is a recurring decimal as the Legislative arm of government , they also try to act as Policemen to ensure that people are not flouting the law , that report came as a result of the visit of Senate committee on local content to FCC Factory, cause FCC are directly reported to them that they were not been patronized by the IOCs and NNPC they decided to investigate the veracity of the claim by the FCC, ITS AN ONGOING PROCESS. Since the inception of the Board the National Assembly have been interested in the activities of the Board to find out compliance with the law and the Act and as such with the view to strengthen the law further.
People are happy with the way you are carrying on with the assignment as the Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Content Board what has been your driving force and motivation.
First my driving force is being a Nigerian and secondly a Nigerian worried at lack of employment in the country which is bedeviling the youths population , as we have , so its how to make sure that we create opportunity for these youths to create jobs for them , most importantly also is how to protect investments that are in the country that is producing about two million barrels per day of oil. My driving force is to create opportunity for Nigerians to create jobs for Nigerians ,
because nobody will build this country than us.Am passionate about Nigeria, I love this country, it has youth potentials that has not been tapped , so how do we ensure that we tap
into those potentials and given the people the opportunity to
participate in the oil and gas sector and again I believe as person I like to do my job diligently and I like to deliver value anywhere I find myself so these I grew up with and maintain in any position I find myself throughout my 27 years of my career.
What had been your challenges…..
Challenges, of course include infrastructural challenges are there in the country, in as much as you want to strive for industrialization of Nigeria, you are also inhibited by some of the infrastructural challenges , road network, rail network , power infrastructure is a challenge , the other is lack of sectorial linkages where you have other sectors of the economy not firing at the same cylinder as you are in the local content on one hand you are pushing for the Industrialization of the country on the other hand other people are pushing for more tax, the other challenge is the nature of the oil and gas business , when you think there is strong capacity and no work coming through because of the rise and fall of oil price, it also atimes dampen ones moral .
Am aware you are a technocrat, are you atimes
under pressure from Politicians.
Of course it’s a normal occurrence and when you have one or two pressures here and there from Politicians but I think what I realize is that once they know what you stand for, once they know that you
abide by the rules and you follow your processes they go off. Those pressures only come to stay if they believe that you have the capacity to bend the rules, the pressures are there but the process that has
been established is what we used to ward off some of these pressures.
Talking about political pressures.
In a nutshell what has been your achievements so far both to
Individual and to the country in general.
I cant put it in a nutshell , because that would be too small. The achievements had been tremendous in terms of what we had done in the last couple of years, increase the local content attainment in the
country both from less than 5 percent to 86 percent today in terms of local content attainment , a world class fabrication yard had sprung up, you have manufacturing capacity that had been developed ,
you have people manufacturing paints , manufacturing cables, manufacturing pipes, today we have been able to integrate FPSO in the country not too many African countries can boast of that.
Today almost 85 percent of the contracts in the country are warded to Nigerian companies, today Nigerians are managing oil fields successfully too, so the achievements has been tremendous, they are just too many. For the individual there had been achievements in terms of employment creation. Because of the drive and the attainment so far a lot of Nigerians had been employed , we have built a lot of capacity for employment, as I said almost 85 percent of the contract awarded in the oil and gas sectors are awarded to Nigerian companies. Nigerians have built a lot of capacity on the back of local content
drive, we have retained five billion ($5b) out of the $20 billion annual industry spent .
How has other African countries keyed in the
Local content in their countries.
Nigeria has become a reference point in terms of local content development in Africa , we have been having series of visits from various African countries wanting to come and study and understand
how we have been able to drive local content to this level , we are constantly been invited to seminars workshops to share our experiences, other countries are working to borrow a leave from
Nigeria because they believe it’s a model that has brought some level of prosperity to our country and they are looking forward to sharing our experiences with us as well as want us to help them in