A bill seeking the establishment of Bitumen Development Commission, has passed a first reading at the 10th Senate on Thursday.
The bill sponsored by the Federal Lawmaker who is representing Ondo South Senatorial District, Senator Jimoh Folorunsho Ibrahim, seeks to establish the Bitumen Development Commission to “regulate activities of exploration, development and exportation for purposes of generating revenue for the country.”
The motion which recognized the availability of Bitumen in the country, expressed the need for a robust legislation that would help in taking the advantage of the resources, for the economy opportunity of Nigeria, as a means of economy diversification.
According to Daily Daily Post, The draft of the motion, which has already been laid during the plenary, explained how bitumen could be an alternative source of revenue generation for the country.
One of the clauses stated, “That the intention of the proposed legislation is to make Bitumen an alternative revenue spinning product in Nigeria, being the second highest deposit in the world after Canada.
“The proposed commission, as projected in the draft bill, should be sited in any of the three towns with high deposits of bitumen in Ondo State, which are Ode-Irele, Agbabu and Igbotako.”
However, the draft showed that when the Bitumen Development Commission is fully established as an agency of the government, it will facilitate the execution of road infrastructure across the country and also create jobs for Nigerians, particularly geologists whose expertise would be needed in its exploration of bitumen.”
However, Senator Ibrahim while speaking on the proposed bill in his office, after plenary, explained further that details of the bill will be laid bare during the second reading when it is called up, while also expressing confidence that the proposed bill would be well supported by his colleagues and will also receive the presidential assent
“If the proposed legislation passes in both the Senate and the House of Representatives with the attendant establishment of the Bitumen Development Commission after presidential assent, it would be the first law on exploration, development and possibly exportation of bitumen in Nigeria,” the lawmaker stated.