The people of Nkpolu Oroworukwo Port Harcourt City Local Government Area of Rivers State, have protested their alleged neglect by the Nigeria Agip Oil Company (NAOC).
The community hosts the Corporate headquarters of Nigeria Agip Oil Company in Port Harcourt.
The community on Wednesday staged a peaceful demonstration at the main gate of the company under the aegis of Nkpolu Oroworukwo Stakeholders Development Forum (NOSDF) and called on Agip to fulfil its corporate social responsibility to its host.
The Chairman of NOSDF, Livingstone Wechie, who led the protest, said NAOC had consistently denied the community its due rights and privileges in the areas of employment, contracts, scholarships, skills acquisition, infrastructure and social amenities.
He regretted that there was no identifiable project in their community that could be credited to NAOC such as roads, hospitals, scholarships, employment, schools and water.
He said: “NAOC has refused to fully implement any of the skewed and dried Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), upgrade or renew same in any manner that will genuinely expand and make lasting resourceful impact on the people of Nkpolu Oroworukwo in line with its corporate social responsibilities.
“It has not captured Nkpolu Oroworukwo in any Global Memorandum of Understanding (GMOU). This by itself is betrayal of global best practice and sabotage of the Rivers State Government and Federal Government efforts towards peace and development in the Niger Delta, Nkpolu Oroworukwo in particular.
“Regrettably, there are no identifiable projects in NkpoluOroworukwo credited to Agip ENI NAOC ranging from roads to hospitals, scholarships, employment, empowerment opportunities, contract opportunities, schools, or even boreholes or community town halls and civic centre to say the least. We challenge NAOC to contest these facts.”
The community said the company had over the years denied them employment opportunities, among other privileges.
“It is also on record that NAOC appears to have as a rigid policy to deliberately shut Nkpolu Oroworukwo people out of their viable contract opportunities, empowerment and employment opportunities.
“This is with exception to some of its divide and rule agents, which it continues to patronise at the detriment of the community. As long as NAOC is concerned, the community can die and nothing will happen. This is condemnable and absolutely unacceptable.
“NAOC continues to treat Nkpolu Oroworukwo matters as a corporate policy of discrimination. They prefer to treat better those communities that have violent dispositions.
“Every effort we have employed to ensure that NAOC rethinks its attitude towards our community has been flagrantly undermined by the management of the company, using their usual divide and rule tactics through some backend.
“NAOC should be made to do the needful by answering as well as compensating for its deliberate corporate negligence and injustice.”
Attempt to obtain the reaction of NAOC on the issue, however, proved abortive.
NDLEA Intercepts 100,000 Bottles Of Codeine Syrup At Onne Port
The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, (NDLEA), has intercepted and seized no fewer than 100,000 bottles of codeine syrup with a total weight of 15,325 kgs at the Onne seaport, Port Harcourt, Rivers state.
NDLEA Director, Media and Advocacy, Mr Femi Babafemi disclosed this in a statement issued at the weekend in Abuja.
Babafemi said that the 100mg illicit cough syrup with codeine packed in 500 cartons and concealed in a container marked MRKU 1565305, bearing made in India imported face masks, was discovered on Thursday, 10th June.
The syrup was found in a warehouse at the Onne port complex during a joint examination by officers of the Nigeria Customs Service, (NCS) State Security Service and the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, (NAFDAC), among others, he added.
He said that the seizure followed intelligence received by the NDLEA, as a result of which the container was detained and moved to the Customs’ government warehouse within the port complex.
The NDLEA spokesman added that no importer or agent had, however, come forward to claim the container, but that efforts were ongoing to track the owner for further investigation and prosecution.
Babafemi quoted the Chairman, (NDLEA) retired Brig. Gen. Buba Marwa as hailing the synergy between various government agencies at the Onne port.
He charged them not to rest on their oars as they continued working hard daily, to keep Nigeria safe.
In particular, he commended the Commander, officers and men of the Port Command in the Rivers capital, and their Abuja airport Command counterparts, for their vigilance and commitment to the task of ridding Nigeria of illicit drugs.
“The damage 100,000 bottles of codeine could have done to our youths, if they had slipped through the port to our villages, towns and cities, is unimaginable. 146.95 kgs of khat could have done the same damage if allowed to go unto our streets.
“We’ll continue to motivate our officers and men so that they can give their best in the discharge of their responsibilities across the country,” he said
“We will ultimately, with the support of all our stakeholders and partners, win the battle against illicit drug trafficking and abuse”, he said.
21st Century Business: Company Harps On Digital, Smart Office Technology
The General Manager, Sales and Marketing, Xerox H.S. Nigeria Limited, Mr Femi Abidoye, has stressed the need for digital printing press as well as Smart Office operations in order to adjust properly in the 21st century office documentation system.
Abidoye, said this during the company’s business exhibition titled “ Digital Printing Press, Smart Office Technology Products And Electronic Document Management System ‘EDMS’ held in Port Harcourt recently.
He noted that the company has made the issue of work from home a reality.
According to him, the Covid-19 pandemic had actually challenged the people on the need to consider work from home a better business option, which he said the company was handy to provide solution.
The Xerox’s General Manager, Sales and Marketing, further said that his company has been in the forefront of sermonising against analogue system to the digital system.
By: King Onunwor
Finima Seeks Host Community Rights From NLNG
Finima community has decried neglect and poor corporate social responsibility by the Nigerian Liquified Natural Gas(NLNG), insisting that the gas multinational has failed to recognise them as host community.
The protest staged by the community was peaceful until some youths alleged to be from Bonny attacked the protesters, unleashing violence and vandalising properties worth millions of naira in the area.
As at the time of writing the report, nine persons were wounded in the attack and were hospitalised.
Speaking on why the community held the protest, an elder of Finima Community, Mr Dagogo Lambeth Brown said for over 30 years the community was relocated for the LNG plant in the early 90s, the community had been sided in terms of hosting rights.
Brown stated that despite having signed an MOU (Memorandum Of Understanding) with the community, NLNG has reneged on what he called legacy issues. Some of the legacy issues include resettlement of indigenes from their ancestral land now used as site for NLNG, environmental, health, education and employment.
He said, “as at today there is nothing to show for hosting LNG on our land…even we have internally displaced persons in Finima.”
Woman Leader in the community, Mrs.Victoria Brown recalled that the community gave land to the federal government to build the multinational gas firm but today the firm has failed to honour and rexognise their host.
Another community woman leader, Mrs Kabaka Brown said many youths are not employed as part of the MOU.
“ We have master and doctoral degree holders who have no jobs. The jobs they give us is cleaners and security men,” she said.
On his part, Youth Leader and former Chairman of FinimaYouth , Ala Hart decried that NLNG has made billions from it soil while the community suffers.
Mr. Hart explained that the major issues of contention forms part of the Community Content Guidelines, which NLNG do not implement.
He noted that the Community Content Guidelines is part of the Nigerian Content Development Monitoring Board established by law.
The guidelines covers employment, environment, health and general welfare of host communities which the gas giant does not implement.
Reacting to the development, the NLNG General Manager, External Relations and Sustainable Development, Eyono Fatayi- Williams said the multinational gas firm had always considered all stakeholders in the community as partners.
“ NLNG remains full committed to sustainable development in the kingdom, hinged on active community participation to drive initiatives and projects that positively impact the lives of the community,” he added.
By: Kevin Nengia
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