MARGINALIZATION: Itsekiri Group Asked To Deploy Dialogue

A social cultural group, Movement for the Development of Itsekiri Oil and Gas Producing Communities (MDIOGPC), Delta State, has been appealed to come to a round table talk with multinational companies in their domain.

The call to reach a gentleman agreement is coming on the heels of threats to shutdown oil facilities operating in Itsekiri land thereby affecting production in the country over alleged marginalisation.

Chairman, Warri south local government area of the State, Dr. Michael Tidi, made the call in a swift reaction to forestall the looming danger.

In a statement made available to The Story on Monday, Dr. Tidi, explained that executing the threat in the face of the global economic downturn occasioned by the Coronavirus pandemic, would further deplete the revenue profile of the Federal and state governments and subsequently reduce government’s financial ability to address the genuine agitation.

The council boss aligned with the State Government’s position that the world has been watching the commendably peaceful protests by the Itsekiri group over the unfair deprivation of the Modular Floating Dockyard (MFD), for training of students of the Nigerian Maritime University and the legitimate demand for resumption of construction work at the Gas Revolution Industrial Park Project (GRIP), in Warri south west local government area.

“The world knows it is unconscionable to deny the oil-producing people Oil Mining Licenses, OML and Marginal Fields generously given to others to their exclusion”, he said.

He disclosed that the federal government has awarded the electrification project that would benefit about 50 communities in the Escravos area as work is already ongoing.

He pointed out that there was need for the contractors to work at a fast pace just as he called for a sustained dialogue by members of MDIOGPC as well as other critical stakeholders from Warri south, Warri south west and Warri north councils with the Federal Government, so as to urgently fix issues of ocean surge, environmental degradation, land reclamation and lack of basic infrastructures bedeviling the oil and gas producing and riverine communities in the aforementioned councils.   

It would be recall that Gbaramatu Ijaw and the Itsekiri group,  renewed threats to ground Nigeria’s oil and gas industry over lack of assurance by the Federal Government to address demands.

Their demands include facilitation of the abandoned age-long Omadino-Escravos Road and the Koko/Ogheye Road Projects as well as the need for the Federal Government to immediately halt the current process of bids for the 57 Marginal Fields.

They called for the doctrine of necessity to be invoked and applied to incorporate the interest of competent companies owned by Gbaramatu indigenes as well as Itsekiri Sons and Daughters from oil and gas producing communities.


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