The South-South Governors Forum has commended the actions taken by President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan to involve the Governors in the consultative process of the management of the post amnesty programme in the region. Our correspondent reports that the commendation was contained in a communiqué signed and issued by six Governors of the region at the end of their one day meeting in Port Harcourt.
According to the Governors, they felt encouraged by the renewed drive to address its challenges which remain a threat to the stability of the region. The communiqué, which was read by the Chairman of the South-South Governors Forum, Governor Liyel Imoke of Cross River, also reaffirmed the setting up of the Bayelsa, Rivers , Akwa Ibom, Cross River, Edo and Delta (BRACED) Commission.
The Governors, the communiqué stated took measures for the formal establishment of its secretariat, explaining that the BRACED Commission will be charged with initiating the Economic Development Council, which is private sector-driven and aims to attract investment to the sub-region.
It noted the degradation of the environment as a result of oil spillage caused by the activities of the oil companies operating in the Niger Delta and called on the Federal Government to take urgent and appropriate measures to compel the oil companies to protect the environment and put in place stronger regulations that would guide oil exploration in the region to ensure the protection of the environment.
They also called on the federal government to expedite action on the passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill which is aimed to benefit communities where the oil resources are exploited.
On the South-South economic Summit, the forum agreed that the first edition, which was successfully held last year is an annual event and is to be held on November 18 and 19, 2010 in Asaba, Delta State and it will be an opportunity for the region to show case its economic potentials.