Senator Tayo Alasoadura, representing Ondo Central Senatorial District in the National Assembly has opened up on how he rejected bribe to scuttle the petroleum industry governance bill (PIGB).
Alasoadura who is the chairman senate committee on petroleum resources (upstream) made this known while receiving a letter of commendation from the correspondents chapel of the Nigeria Union of Journalists, NUJ, Ondo State Council in Akure.
Apart from being offered millions of dollars to destroy the bill, the senator said that a former chairman of the committee had received $10 million dollars from “powerful Nigerians and some oil companies.”
“They offered me money, but I said no… members of the committee in the sixth and seventh National Assembly collected bribe.
“I was offered millions of dollars. One of them said a former chairman of the committee I head got $10 million to scuttle the bill. I could have taken the money and resigned from the national assembly,” he said.
“So the politics, lobby and so on from those who do not want the bill to see the light of the day was terrible.
But to the glory of God, the bill was passed in two hours because I did a lot of underground work like, meeting people, convincing them about the need for it and areas where people feel they were not satisfied especially, the frontier oil exploration outside the south-south.”
The bill was passed on the 25th of May 2017 after a 13-year delay which the senator blamed on the bribe offered to the members of the lawmakers.
He said the “imbalance in the national assembly”, which often gives the north an advantage in terms of voting, also had an effect on the bill.
“The politics behind the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) is more than what you have to do to get the bill passed. In fact, there was a day I was abused by a set of people who came to lobby me for the bill not to be passed,” he said.
“Unless you can withstand pressure, you won’t be able to do what I did. And by the time we were to take the bill to the floor of the house for passage, we booked three days because we thought it would be stormy.
“The south-south wants everything; the north does not want it. So, when it comes to the floor of the Senate, it will die because the northern senators are more than the southern senators. National Assembly is about lobby. It is about getting people to support you.
“If they don’t support you, if you bring the best bill to the floor of the Senate, it will die.”