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OML 25: Buhari Apologises To Host Communities Over Neglect

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President Mohammadu Buhari yesterday apologised to the host communities of Oil Mining Lease 25 over the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and Shell Petroleum Development Company’s failure to provide potable drinking water, schools and health centres in the host communities despite generating over N700m daily for the past 40 years from the facility.
The president stated this in Kula kingdom, Akuku-Toru Local Government Area of Rivers State, during the official reopening of the of the Belema flow which would now be operated by Shell Petroleum Development Company and Belemaoil Producing Limited following an agreement brokered by the federal government recently after operation of the facility was halted for two years by the host communities.
Buhari, who was represented by his Senior Special Adviser on Niger Delta affairs, SenatorItaEnang, noted that the communities hosting the OML 25 which produces huge revenue for the country should not be demanding basic utilities such as clean drinking water, schools and health facilities and not get it after all these years.
He said, “I am saddened that for the past 40 years of Shell’s operation here, there is no school, potable drinking water nor hospital; I will take your demands to the president and he will not just provide your needs, but will also provide all necessary facilities for all oil-bearing communities in Nigeria.
“On behalf of the country, we apologise to you, this situation under president Buhari will change for the better for us all.”
“I personally scooped the water you drink here with my hands and it has oil in it, I can still feel the oil in my palms till now.”
“Communities hosting a facility which generates over $2m per day which amounts to over N700m daily for the country should not be asking for a primary school and health centre in 2019 after all these years. It is saddening.” He added.
He commended the Founder and President of Belemaoil Producing Limited, Engr. Tein Jack-Rich for revolutionalising the oil industry in the area of catering for the welfare of host communities to bring peace and enhance productivity.
“I raise your hand for bringing peace into the oil sector through your deliberate policy to develop the host communities. Your initiative has brought tremendous peace to the oil sector of the nation’s economy,” he said.
The Group Managing Director, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, MeleKyari who was represented by the Group Managing Director, National Petroleum Investment Management Services, Musa Lawan, said the NNPC would partner Shell and Belema to address the needs of the host communities.
He added that the reopening signifies more revenue for the country and development for the host communities.
“We will redirect our 2020 budget towards this because we are going to take it up and capture these issues.
“I have personally observed the lack of potable drinking water and school in the community, so in partnership with Shell and Belema oil, beginning 2020, we will have a programme to at least solve these two issues and we’ll continue to address the demands of the people as they arise.

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Banigo Felicitates With Justice Wike On Her Birthday

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Rivers State Deputy Governor, Dr. Mrs. Ipalibo Harry Banigo has felicitated with the wife of the State Chief Executive Hon. Justice Eberechi Suzzette Nyesom Wike as she celebrates her birthday on Saturday, 23rd May, 2020.

 

In a statement from the Government House in Port Harcourt on Friday, 23rd May 2020, Dr. Banigo described Hon. Justice Wike as a humane and God fearing woman who is a great pillar of strength to our amiable Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike.

 

While wishing her many happy returns the Deputy Governor prayed the Almighty God to continue to protect and bless Hon. Justice Eberechi Suzzette Nyesom Wike.

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Former Nigeria President Jonathan Loses Foster Dad.

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The family of former Nigerian President,Goodluck Jonathan and the Otuoke community of Ogbia Local Government Area of Bayelsa state has been thrown into mourning as the News of the sudden demise of Chief Nitabai Inegite,the former president’s foster father reached them.

Though no official reports have reached us as to the cause of his death,The Tide learnt that the septuagenerian has been briefly ill shortly before his demise.
The former President, who visited the residence of his late foster father the early hours of Wednesday has not made any official statement regarding funeral arrangement.
Chief Inegite,popularly called ‘holy’ by his admirers and friends was initially reported to have been responding to treatment in an undisclosed health facility where his health later deteriorated before finally giving up  the ghost  at about 11:00 pm,Tuesday 19th day of May,2020.
You would recall that the late Chief Nitabai Inegite was twice reported to have been kidnapped some time between 2014 and 2016 respectively.
The late former president’s foster father was survived by his wife,biological children,grand children and numerous relatives.
By Ariwera Ibibo-Howells, Yenagoa.
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Nigerian Senate Considers Bill For Ensure Food Security

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…seeks establishment of Food Reserve Agency
The Nigerian Senate, in a seemingly proactive stop to forestall anticipated food shortfall  in the country ,  on Tuesday, commenced legislative work on a critical bill to ensure food security in Nigeria through  the establishment of  Food Reserve Agency to plan and implement policies for adequate food production and storage.
The bill  sponsored  by Senator Abdullahi Adamu (Nasarawa West), scaled second reading at plenary , on Tuesday.
Leading debate on the bill, Senator Adamu noted that Nigeria as a nation needs to develop its Agricultural sector to ensure not only alternate economy but also food security .
He further emphasised that this requires  an vibral  agency to drive all attending policies for the growth and sustainability of the sector.
According to the lawmaker, the Food Reserve agency when established, would be responsible for storing food grains and other food commodities for strategic purposes.
His words “Agriculture plays a pivotal role in the development and growth of every nation. Any country seeking to diversify its economy, alleviate poverty, create jobs and ensure food security should prioritize agriculture.
“Nigeria recognizing the important role Agriculture plays has made efforts to place the sector at the fore by introducing different intervention programmes and policies backed by enabling laws.
“A further step to be taken to ensure food security in our country at all times is to formulate enabling laws that will address food insecurity,”
“The agency will implement the overall National Food Reserve Policy to ensure a reliable supply of designated commodities in the country.”
The lawmaker recalled that, “the recent mandate of the President during the COVID-19 pandemic to distribute 70,000 metric tons of grains from the Grains Reserves shows clearly how important it is for a country to have a Food Reserve Agency.”
 Stressing the importance of food security ,he linked the current Covid 19 situation and its Nigeria’s readiness to  ensure the nation don’t wind up in food crises as well.
According to Senator Adamu, with the Agency in place, Nigeria will be taking the right step in the right direction as replicated in other African countries such as Zambia and Tanzania.
“With the existence of the Agency, emergency food crises will be taken care of especially in the period of a pandemic.
“There will also be a reduction in post-harvest losses as silos, warehouses, equipment, ancillary facilities and other suitable storage facilities will be installed and maintained.”  the Senator explained.
After the debate, the President of  the Senate, Senator Ahmad Lawan referred the bill to the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development chaired by the sponsor of the bill Adsmu Abdullahi.
The Committee  is given four weeks  to report back to the Senate.
Nneka Amaechi-Nnadi.
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