Why we stopped construction of gas development project in Imo, by Shell
Shell Petroleum Development Company Limited (SPDC) said it temporarily halted the construction of a multi- billion naira Assa North/ Ohaji South Gas Development Project sited in Imo State, which was started in 2019, due to the growing incidents of insecurity in the area.
The project, when completed, has a potential capacity for 300 million standard cubic feet of gas per day, one of the largest domestic gas projects in Nigeria.
Sadly, the oil Dutch giant said it has uncovered, at least, 112 illegal refineries in Ikwerre, Rivers State. Shell’s Head, Corporate Relations Nigeria and Director, SPDC, Igo Weli, disclosed this at the weekend during an engagement with some journalists from Imo and Abia states on crude theft awareness , pipeline vandalism and illegal refineries perpetrated by hoodlums in the operational areas of the South South and South East.
Regretting that the project, which was started in 2019 and expected to be completed in 2023, she said it was put on hold, last year, following the killings and attacks by suspected cult members and other hoodlums, lamenting that the action had put on hold the over 980 employment opportunities and 2,612 sub- contracting chances, valued at N1.6 billion.
At the occasion attended by the Imo and Abia chairmen of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Chris Akaraonye and Victor Ndukwe, respectively; and other Shell officials, Ivan Okoye, Lead, Remediation; Jack Mpkakabori; Lanre Abiola, Lead Encroachment Management; Dr. Francis, official in the department of Community Health Project and Strategies; Hope Nuka, Manager, Opportunities; Mrs. Judit Okakuru, Shell Relations Officer (Imo and Abia); Michael Adande, Shell Spokesperson, Michael Adande, and an official of the media unit of the oil exploration and production company, Emeka Chinke, Weli decried high criminal activities, which led to loss in revenue accruable to the international firm to the tune of over $1 billion in the last few months.
He regretted that despite the social investment programmes, which the SPDC Joint Venture showered on over 18,000 persons, and 1,833 patients in eye problems, with 678 refractive errors and presbyo pia issues, and other healthcare projects, as well as provision of infrastructure in the more than 12 communities, the hoodlums set up over 150 oil bunkers and illegal refineries, leading to the Abaezi forest explosion, in Ohaji /Egbema Local Council of the state, resulting in over 110 fatalities, 200 injured.