Delta State Governor, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan has pleaded with the National Assembly to accelerate hearing and passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) as the future of the Industry and indeed the country, depended on it.
Dr. Uduaghan, who made the appeal when the National President of PENGASSAN paid him a courtesy visit in Asaba yesterday, said the passage of the bill would help sanitize the petroleum industry and enhance the development of the oil producing areas.
He explained that Delta state government believed in the Bill and would support its passage to help solve the developmental issues in the Niger Delta and ensure lasting peace in the region.
“For us in Delta State, we believe that there must be sanity in the petroleum industry. We have resolved that once the details of the bill are made public, we will look at it and ensure that it is implemented”, he stated.
Governor Uduaghan frowned at the failure of some organisations to remit the tax deducted from their workers as PAYE, to the government explaining that Delta state government would not tax any worker more than what was stipulated in the existing tax regime.
He charged workers to ensure that taxes deducted from their salaries were remitted by management to the coffers of the state government, adding that the state government has directed the board of Internal Revenue to issue receipts and tax clearance certificates to persons whose taxes have been collected.
The Governor reiterated his administration’s commitment in ensuring the protection of workers in the state in order to continuously maintain labour-friendly relationship and have a conducive working environment.
Earlier in his address, the National President of PENGASSAN, Comrade Babatunde Ogun, promised that his Union would continue to partner with Delta State government because of the labour-friendly environment created in the state.
He commended the Governor for ensuring that there was less labour crisis in the state stressing that his administration has done much in the development of the state.
“I thank the Governor for the good working relationship between government, PENGASSAN and sister unions that is why we have fewer crises in labour relations in the state. I want to say that you should continue in your good work and leave a legacy behind,” he said.
He appealed to the Governor and his colleagues in the Niger Delta to help the Union canvass for the speedy passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) and its implementation to enhance transparency in governance for the development of the region.
“We surely believe that the governors of the south/south region should look into the issue of PIB Bill. This will help us in the petroleum industry and the development of the region.”
Comrade Ogun, stated that the Union needs the Governor’s support in stamping out contract staff which he said was against the policy of PENGASSAN.