Following the appointment of a Sole Administrator (SA), to oversee the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), late Saturday, a militant group on the aegis of ‘Reformed Niger Delta Avengers (RNDA)’, has announced its determination to shut down oil production in the Niger Delta region.
RNDA has, therefore, advised multinationals oil companies operating in the creeks of the Niger Delta region to evacuate its workers on rigs, platforms and manifolds, warning that it will close down all the oil wells and flow stations in the creeks as well as cut down the ESCRAVOS-Warri-Kaduna gas pipeline that transmits gas to Abuja.
This was contained in a statement signed by the self-styled Commanding Officer of RNDA, ‘Major General’ Johnmark Ezonebi, aka OBAMA with the commanders of the nine militant groups in the creeks of Bini River, after convening an emergency meeting on the issue early on Sunday.
RNDA accused the Minister of the Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio of working in tandem with some powerful blocs in the Aso Rock Presidential Villa to approve the appointment of his cousin brother from Akwa Ibom State who is presently the Executive Director of Finance and Administration, Mr Akwa Effiong Okon as the sole administrator to oversee the NDDC to achieve a one man show.
The group while calling on President Buhari to act and correct the anomaly before it is too late, warned that every illegality must stop else it would be resisted heavily with any means necessary.
“Enough is enough of this continuous illegality and if Mr President folds his hands to allow this form of corruption and devilish act to continue without acting and without doing anything, then we the RNDA with the dreaded Striking Force Units of RNDA in the creeks will not fold our arms and keep quiet and we will not allow this to happen again this time around.
“We want to let Akpabio know that he and his fellow bidders in the Villa will fail woefully and they cannot enslave the people of the Niger Delta any longer and we will fight Akpabio to standstill with the last drop of our blood in the creeks”.
The group further states; “Again, Niger Delta militant has declared a serious warning, this time around there will be no going back. RNDA, writes to President Muhammadu Buhari an open letter over a proposed biding of Senator Akpabio to announce a one-man show of a frivolous criminal minded intentional Sole Administrator to oversee the NDDC with his cousin brother, Mr Akwa Effiong Okon from Akwa Ibom as the sole administrator alone without appointing EDP and EDFA in the commission just to enable Akpabio to siphon, divert and embezzle billions into the pocket of Akpabio and his fellow cronies from the recovered billions by EFCC which Mr. President directed should be returned to the commission.
“That is the funds Akpabio wants to embezzle and divert into his personal pocket with his cousin brother if appointed as the sole administrator just only one man alone to oversee the commission without any trace but it will not work this time around.
“The RNDA militant group from the nine states of the Niger Delta region known as the Reformed Niger Delta Avengers (RNDA) has again warned seriously that if Mr President fold his hands and allow Akpabio to bribe the Villa and have his way and announce the name of Mr Effiong Okon the present EDFA, who is a relative to Mr Akpabio as the sole administrator to oversee the NDDC, excluding the appointment of EDP & EDFA, then the RNDA will be left with no option than to declare total war in the creeks to cripple the economy and we will also announce operation zero crude oil to flow in the creeks of Niger Delta.
“And we warned again seriously that if Mr President fold his hands and allow this to happen then we will assume that President Muhammadu Buhari is an enemy to the people of the Niger Delta and as much as Mr President continue to maintain his integrity and does not want to be an enemy to the people of Niger Delta, it is high time he called Akpabio to order in the interest of peace in the once troubled region, if not we will go ahead with our proposed plan, and we will visit Port Harcourt and burn down the entire NDDC building.
“Furthermore RNDA wants to state clearly that Mr President and the presidency should hold Akpabio responsible for whatever that will befall destruction of oil pipelines and oil facilities to shut down production of crude oil and attack to the ESCRAVOS-Warri- Kaduna gas major line.
“Mr President and the Villa should know that Akpabio is not popular and cannot withstand this battle because Akpabio and his family including his fellow cronies will not be spared in this battle because we know where all Akpabio properties and his fellow cronies’ properties are located across the country.
“We will not support any illegality and we will not fold our arms and allow just one man called Akpabio to enslave the oil and gas producing community people that are suffering in the creeks of the Niger Delta and Akpabio should know that it is the oil producing communities’ funds that is used in funding the NDDC, and therefore, he Akpabio cannot continue to enslave the people any more.
“And the RNDA has warned and there is no going back this time around and we have already directed that our Strike Force Unit is to be on red alert in the creeks to kick start blowing up all oil facilities and to bring down the major crude oil pipelines and cut down the Escravos-Warri- Kaduna gas pipeline that transmit gas to Abuja”, it threatened.
206 Edo, Delta Teachers To Learn STEM By Application
Two hundred teachers and six Chief Inspectors of Education (CIE) in Edo and Delta states are undergoing comprehensive training to overhaul their pedagogical skills
The training, which began with a three-day workshop penultimate week in Benin City, will last three months and be followed by the establishment of Science Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) clubs in the schools of the teachers.
An initiative of SEPLAT Energy Plc, an indigenous energy company, in collaboration with Joint Venture partner, Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC), the Seplat JV Teachers Empowerment Programme (STEP) was developed to address gaps that the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) has identified in public and private school teachers teaching at the basic education level.
Speaking of the programme in Benin, the Director, External Affairs and Sustainability, SEPLAT, Dr Chioma Nwachukwu, said the teachers would learn how to apply 21st century skills, lesson notes preparations, entrepreneurship, leadership development, and how to use the Seplat STEM App.
Nwachukwu, who was represented by Seplat’s Corporate Social Responsibility Manager, Mrs. Esther Icha, said the training was robust because education had gone beyond the teacher giving all the concept in class.
She said: “They are now going to apply learning and demonstration, and that is why the STEM training is very critical in nation building.
“Teachers will be trained on modern learning techniques, critical thinking skills, problem solving skills, and the lesson notes,” she said.
Nwachukwu added that the training was expected to end after three months with an award of certificates to successful teachers next February.
She said Seplat expects teachers who have gone through the training to set up a STEM club in their various schools – with the hope of inspiring puils to come up with innovative solutions to contemporary problems.
“The STEM clubs will usher in an exhibition where the use of STEM to proffer solution to world problems will be showcased”, she said.
Officials of the Edo State Ministry of Education, Edo State Ministry of Science and Technology and Delta State Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education present at the training said they were happy to collaborate with SEPLAT on the project.
Permanent Secretary, Edo State Ministry of Education, Stellamaris Imasuen, said the initiative aligned with the Edo government’s vision for education.
Imasuen, who was represented by the Executive Director, Science Vocational and Technical Education, Odegua Kushe, said the state was already seeing the impact of the training on the first batch of teachers trained last year under the project.
“The impact of the training, which Seplat started last year, is evident in the increase in the number of students participating in science and technology competitions at both local and international levels,” she said.
On her part, the Delta State Commissioner for Basic and Secondary Education, Rose Ezewu, praised the company for partnering with government to equip teachers with modern techniques for improved teaching and learning.
Ezewu, represented by the Director of School Services, Ufuoma Oduma, said the training had addressed a gap created by non-adaptation of modern technology in the teaching process.
Also speaking, Managing Director, NPDC, Alli Zahra, represented by Bassey Etim Bassey, said the training was necessary because of the critical role that teachers play in nation-building.
Some of the participants said the training would give opportunity to change how they teach.
EJoma Emiliana, a CIE from Oshimili South LGA, Delta State said the programme had enhanced her knowledge as a supervisor.
“This programme has increased and enhanced my knowledge. Thanks to Seplat for coming to better my ideas in different ways,” she said.
Another participant, Godfrey Edobholo, a teacher from the Federal Science and Technical College (FSTC), Uromi, Edo State, said he appreciated the empowerment programme which he described as awesome.
He said: “We have seen how our minds have been refined because a mind refined is a life transformed. We have seen how important it is because as a teacher, you are a leader.
“We have seen the bridge and the link between a teacher and a leader because leadership itself is programming to securing the present which is the now and also capturing the future. So generally, the Seplat empowerment programme is for us to secure the future of our children which is our students and also capture the future because if you trained a child, you have educated a nation.”
The Tide learnt that selection of teachers for this year’s training was stiff – with 874 teachers in Edo and Delta states taking an online test from which the 206 participants were selected. The beneficiaries were drawn from 28 schools each from both states – with a ratio of five teachers for each public school, and two from each private school.
Recall that for the maiden edition of the STEP initiative STEP initiative last year, 389 teachers from Edo and Delta states took the online qualification test on September 16, 2020.
On November 23, 2020, 143 participants comprising 100 secondary school teachers and 43 CIEs began with an initial five-day physical training, followed by a virtual training using an online platform designed specifically for the programme.
Osinbajo Commissions Projects In A’Ibom, Today
Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, will inaugurate the Dakkada Luxury Estate and Dakkada Luxury Tower, today in Akwa Ibom State designed to provide affordable housing for the people.
This would be done on the sidelines of Akwa Ibom State government’s 34th-year anniversary celebration, in which Osinbajo would commission the projects as part of activities to marking the day of its creation.
While briefing journalists on activities slated for the anniversary, Commissioner for Information & Strategy, Ini Ememobong, Wednesday said the ceremony, which began yesterday, will host Osinbajo today with a view to intimating him with developments in the state.
He explained that the anniversary celebration would be low-keyed due to adherence to the Covid-19 guidelines, adding, however, that the state government would not declare today as a public holiday.
Emenobong explained that other events lined up to mark the state’s anniversary celebration include the commissioning of two 45M span bridges at Obot Akara Council, internal roads in Shelter Afrique Estate, swearing-in of new paramount rulers and an interactive media session with Governor Udom Emmanuel on Saturday.
Furthermore, the expanded 25Km Uyo-Ikot Ekpene road will be commissioned on Wednesday, October 6, while internal roads in Oron, Udung Uko councils and the Akwa Ibom State University would be inaugurated on Friday, October 8, 2021.
“In furtherance of Governor Emmanuel’s commitment to improving the quality of healthcare delivery in the state, the remodeled Ikot Ekpene General Hospital will be commissioned on Tuesday, October 26, while an Oil Palm Processing facility will be inaugurated at Essien Udim Council,” he said.
Bayelsa Set To Overhaul, Upgrade Memorial Park -Says INC, Ijaws Now More United, Stronger
The Bayelsa State Government has said it is prepared to upgrade the Ijaw heroes’ memorial park in Yenagoa, capital of the state to an international standard.
The Tide learnt this during an interview with the Commissioner for Ijaw National Affairs, Elder Erasmus Uche Owaji Patrick.
He described the State Governor, Douye Diri as a pan-Ijaw leader, saying he was conversant not only with issues concerning the development of the state, but the entire Ijaw ethnic nationality.
Patrick hinted that following governor Diri’s resolve to completing all projects inherited from previous administrations of the state, the governor during the 44th state executive council meeting held sometime in August, this year has approved the reconstruction and overhaul of the park to a more befitting standard for late Ijaw heroes, irrespective of state of origin, sex and clan.
He noted however, that the prerogative of who qualifies to be interred at the park solely lies with the governor, stating further that such persons must have attained the peak of their chosen careers with proven integrity.
“We’ve not abandoned the Ijaw heroes’ memorial park. Soon you ‘ld see us remodelling that project to international standard.
“The governor during the 44th state exco meeting has approved the remodelling and overhaul of the heroes’ memorial park at the Ijaw House in Yenagoa.
“It would be reconstructed with the state-of-the-art facilities. a football field would be there, a gallary for events would be there, a car park and lots of other recreational facilities. And so, very soon you would see us working there”, he said.
Meanwhile following the recent visit of the executives of the Ijaw national Congress (INC) and a other prominent Sons and daughters of Ijaw extraction to president Muhammadu Buhari, the Commissioner has said that the absence of the state governor, Diri in that delegation was due to other important state functions that he had had to attend to.
He however, described the visit as historic, saying as against insinuations that the governor’s absent at the visit was a sign that he was not willing to support the INC was just figment of imagination from those who envy the cordial relationship between the governor and the INC exco.
The Commissioner noted that governor Diri has more than ever demonstrated his commitment towards the peace, prosperity, unity and development of the Ijaw nation, saying that it was because of the governor’s believe in the dreams and aspirations of the founding fathers of the INC which made him not to interfere in the Congress’ affairs before, during and after the elections of the extant executives.
“Governor Diri himself was a member of Congress. He was the INC’s National organizing Secretary, So he understands what it means to have a stronger, better united INC and Ijaw nation.
“And that is what he has done by not interfering in the conduct of the election that produced the current exco of the congress.
“To tell you how much the governor was committed to building a stronger and more united INC and Ijaw nation, just recently and he has since been doing, he approved and released funds for the running of the INC”, the Commissioner added.
By: AriweraIbibo-Howells, Yenagoa
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