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Give jobs to Nigerian firms with capacity, Nestoil boss urges FG

Give jobs to Nigerian firms with capacity, Nestoil boss urges FG

Ernest Azudialu-Obiejesi, chairman of Nestoil Limited, has called for a change in the implementation of the Nigerian content policy that allows contracts to be awarded to companies with the lowest bids despite an apparent lack of capacity to deliver the jobs.

Azudialu-Obiejesi, who spoke on Monday, during a panel session on ‘exportation of local capacity: maximising regional opportunities’, at the ongoing Nigerian oil and gas conference in Abuja, said to grow local capacity, projects should be awarded to companies with proven capacity.

He acknowledged that while the country has enough capacity to make it a net exporter to African countries, it was important to address the factors limiting the growth of the country.

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According to him, “We can export the capacity in the oil and gas industry to other countries and exporting them means we need to enshrine and make sure that we’ll have those companies that are in Nigeria already developed better and entrench all those capacities in terms of human resources, experiences, capital and equipment, so you can export them to other countries outside Nigeria.

“But also in doing that, I recognise that one of the enabling tools is the NCDMB, which is the local content board. That content board has done quite well, but also we still have setbacks in terms of how these laws are enforced, to protect the local companies.

“And we’ve also seen that one of the reasons why the local companies are not doing very well is because they don’t have what we’ll call a good bidding process.

“A bidding process where everybody says if you quote the lowest price they will give you the job and there are a lot of people who are under-qualified contractors who don’t have the capacity, but they will tell you they have a connection, and because of that they will go and bid for jobs they cannot do at lowest prices. So these things have to be checkmated”, he added.