PETROLEUM HOST COMMUNITIES FUND: SEEN THROUGH THE LENS OF CHARITABLE TRUST
This article undertakes the viability of the Petroleum Host Communities (PHC) Fund in the Petroleum Industrial Bill (PIB) as a novel initiative towards the economic and social development of petroleum producing communities in Nigeria. The Niger Delta region may be considered as the engine room of Nigeriaâ€™s economy, but they receive little or no share in the revenue accruable from petroleum exploration and production. This article depicts the applicability of the principles of trust, specifically charitable trust in oil and gas law through the innovation of the PHC Fund whereby oil companies are seen as â€˜settlorsâ€™, Niger Delta indigenes are the â€˜beneficiariesâ€™ while the government is seen as a â€˜trusteeâ€™ utilizing the fund for bringing sustainable development in the region. This article argues that the purpose of the PHC Fund falls within the spirit and intendments of the Statute of Charitable Uses 1601 thus making it charitable in the bid of removing the impoverish state of the Niger Delta region. This article concludes that the PIB which stands as an antidote to issues pervading the Nigerian oil and gas sector must be passed without delay otherwise the novel concept of PHC Fund may not see the light of the day.
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