By Gboyega Akinsanmi
Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola (SAN) Friday blamed the Presidency over the report of the Petroleum Revenue Taskforce, saying it delayed in conducting investigation into oil industry.
The governor expressed the view at the 2012 Kuramo Conference under a theme: "The Global Common Wealth" held in Eko Hotels and Suites, Victoria Island.
Also the conference, Nobel Laureate winner, Prof. Wole Soyinka and Director of Oxford University Centre for African Economics, Prof. Paul Collier tasked the Federal Government on the tackle rots in the oil industry.
Speaking at the conference, Fashola said that the executive failed "to do its job on the fuel subsidy scandal. The report should have come earlier than now".
He added that the legislature should not have been the first to embark on the report; rather the executive holds the responsibility to conduct investigation into the activities in the oil industry.
He explained the executive "have the responsibility for law enforcement in Nigeria. Anyone found during the investigation should have been dismissed immediately. That was why I said that any public office holder that abuses his office should face severe punishment that is available by law.”
He added that the oil sector "is the most vulnerable sector of the country’s economy. It is where the major source of revenue for the country comes from.”
In his address, Collier said the Federal Government had a huge challenge in managing the country’s oil sector effectively and that there "are three features lacking in the management oil sector in the country.”
He named the features "to include rules, institution and the critical mass, the citizens. It is the responsibility of the Federal Government to generate the rules and the institution.
"The rules and institutions are just written on paper, without the critical mass, the citizens understanding the issues, the rules and institutions are dead. What the rules and institutions about in the management of oil, depletion, volatility and corruption. Oil is a natural asset.
"It belongs not only to this generation but also to the future. If this generation chooses to deplete, it has an obligation to put in place other assets, hopefully more productive than oil itself, which the next generation can then use to generate wealth. That is the responsibility of this generation, particularly decision makers.