Niger Delta activists threaten to close Agip’s facilities for neglecting area
Groups seek more concessions in host communities’ bill
The Niger Delta Activists Forum (NDAF) yesterday threatened to shut down the Nigeria Agip Oil Company (NAOC)’s oil flow stations for sidelining its host communities.
Conveners of the group, Success Jack and Bristol Emmanuel, said in a statement that the decision was reached after consultations with no fewer than 120 community based-organisations, leaders and youth groups in the Niger Delta.
It accused NAOC of sidelining the host communities in its 2014/2015 junior production technicians’ recruitment exercise in line with extant industry laws.
NDAF, therefore, urged NAOC to induct and integrate the successful applicants within 14 days, failing which it would commence a total and complete shut down of all NAOC flow stations, and oil production facilities in the host communities.
The group argued that their position became inevitable since they had explored all options of dialogue, which were frustrated by NAOC.
Alleging that NAOC had at different arbitration fora admitted guilt over its negligence, they said the firm’s divisive conducts were a direct assault on the economic well being of the Niger Delta people and an affront on the communities and national security.
However, the group commended President Muhammadu Buhari for signing the Not Too Young To Run Bill into law, describing it as a historic achievement, geared towards youth empowerment and inclusion in the country’s governance.
Meanwhile, the Associated Body of Concerned Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) in the Niger Delta has canvassed for the strengthening of Host Communities Bill and demanded more independent funding for successful operations.
This was contained in a letter to the Senate Joint Committee on Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) at its public hearing on three PIB legislations from June 4 to June 6, 2018 by the NGOs.
Executive Director of Girls to Women Research and Development Centre (GWRDC), a member of the coalition, Mrs. Olamide Falana, presented the letter to the legislators and other stakeholders.
The association, representing indigenous organisations based in the region, presented the letter titled: Five Recommendations To Improve The Host Communities Bill, focused on the Petroleum Host and Impacted Communities Development Bill 2018.
Falana added that the proposed legislation by the National Assembly presented an important opportunity to help the most affected communities in the Niger Delta to experience the needed socio-economic development.