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SPDC’s Gbaran-Ubie Phase 2 Comes On Stream …As Firm Spends N10.5trn On Host Communities

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The Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Ltd (SPDC) has commenced production at Gbaran-Ubie Phase 2, a key project in the Niger Delta that will help to boost gas supply to the domestic market and maintain supply to the export market.
A statement by Shell, made available to The Tide in Port Harcourt, said Gbaran-Ubie Phase 2 follows the success of the first phase of the Gbaran-Ubie integrated oil and gas development, which was commissioned in June 2010.
It explained that peak production at Gbaran-Ubie Phase 2 is expected in 2019 with approximately 175,000 barrels of oil equivalent (kboe) per day.
A breakdown of this peak period production is approximately 864 million standard cubic feet of gas per day (MMscf/d) and 26,000 barrels of condensate per day.
SPDC Managing Director and Country Chair, Shell Companies in Nigeria, Osagie Okunbor, said “The latest development at Gbaran-Ubie is a powerful statement on the continuing commitment of SPDC and our Joint Venture partners to harness Nigeria’s oil and gas resources for the benefit of the country and stakeholders”.
“The project was delivered safely through an integrated team with a significant engagement and empowerment of community service providers and Nigerian companies,” Okunbor added.
The Tide gathered that 18 wells have been drilled and a new pipeline constructed between Kolo Creek and Soku, which connects the existing Gbaran-Ubie Central Processing Facility (CPF) to the Soku Non-Associated Gas (NAG) plant.
First gas flowed from the wells in March, 2016, with the facilities coming on stream in July, 2017.
Vice President, Nigeria and Gabon, Peter Costello, said: “This is exciting news for Nigeria as it signals Shell’s continued strategy of deploying investment and expertise in our areas of strength.
“Our aim is to continue to explore areas of partnership in Nigeria where the right conditions exist and where we can add best value,” Costello added.
The Tide investigation show that Gbaran-Ubie Phase 2 will help to process the condensate from Kolo Creek, Gbaran, Koroama and Epu fields, thereby assisting in reducing the volume of flaring from SPDC operations.
The project has contributed to economic development in the Niger Delta and assisted the local community and Nigerian companies.
During construction, members of the community and local sub-contractors provided goods and services in line with the provisions of a Global Memorandum of Understanding (GMoU).
Training was also provided to the community in pipeline maintenance, scaffolding, welding and piping fabrication.
SPDC is the operator of a joint venture (the SPDC JV) involving the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC,) SPDC, Total E&P Nigeria Ltd and ENI subsidiary Nigerian Agip Oil Company Limited.
Meanwhile, the Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited said it has made an economic contribution of $29billion (approximately N10, 564,127,764,127.76) to Nigerian Government as well as empowering and positively impacting on lives, especially in its host communities in the Niger Delta region and the country at large in the last five years.
The company explained that on the average, it contributes N7billion monthly for the implementation of Global Memorandum of Understanding (GMoU) and Social Investment initiatives in the region.
This was disclosed during an integrated stakeholders’ forum organized by SPDC-JV for its host communities from Ahoada-West in Port Harcourt, last Tuesday.
Shell General Manager, External Relations, Mr Igo Weli stated that Shell Companies in Nigeria (SCiN) work in partnership with state governments, communities and civil society groups to implement policies on social investment that would better the lives of Nigerians, especially those in host communities.
“This is done through Social Investment activities, which focus on community and enterprise development, education, health, access to energy and road safety. This, however, excludes community-driven development programmes and initiatives delivered through GMoU which focuse on various themes as determined by benefitting communities,” Weli said.
Represented by the Shell Stakeholder Relations Manager, Dr Alice Ajeh emphasized that the GMoU cluster community for Ekpeye, which was frozen for many years ago, has now been reactivated, noting that all payments made in respect to GMoU implementation were available for perusal by affected communities.
He stressed that while forming the community clusters for the proper utilization of funds for the GMoU, SPDC strives to ensure that 30 per cent of members were women while 70 per cent men.
The general manager explained that the chairmen of the Cluster Development Boards make up the governing body for the GMoU, adding that the board provides for the immediate basic needs of their communities.
He noted that plans were underway to organize interactive forum with the community cluster development boards (CDBs) to provide accountability platform on how they have been utilising the monthly N7billion GMoU fund.
Speaking, the Cluster Board Chairman, Abua/Odual Local Government Area, Isaac Abraham stated that SPDC has positively impacted on the people of the area, adding that the company was not to blame for the many infrastructure deficit issues in communities.
Abraham commended SPDC for positively impacting on the lives of host communities, especially the youth, adding that if other stakeholders were fulfilling their obligations as much as Shell, the Niger Delta would have been transformed.
“I said I have positive commendation for SPDC because for several years, if you go to the grassroots, there is no presence of government, but what we experience as development here now is from SPDC through the proper utilisation of GMoU funds.

We are ready to give account of how we spent the GMoU fund,” he said.
In separate interviews with The Tide on the way forward to reduce the high rate of pipeline vandalism and sabotage of crude oil assets in the Niger Delta, some concerned youth of communities in Abua/Odual, Ekpeye and Engenni, expressed readiness to collaborate with Shell to safeguard critical oil and gas facilities in host communities.
The Uwema Aminigbo Community Palace Secretary, January Igoma, appealed to SPDC to make Aminigboko Emughan Community hospital built since 1995, functional, adding that the community wants the medical staff withdrawn from the facility reinstated.
He also listed other demands as rehabilitation of the two water projects, the Owerewere Link Road, Emughan junction linking Aminigboko Road, as well as the Emesu linking the Emesu Waterside Road.
Speaking, the Engenni people listed their demands to include scholarship to the youth, reconstruction of internal roads, skills acquisition programmes, pipe-borne water, employment and empowerment opportunities for the people, while urging for investment in agriculture development to make the people self-sufficient in food production.

 

Susan Serekara-Nwikhana

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LGA Boss Vows To Deliver Fubara, Others In Rivers

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The Chairman of Oyigbo Local Government Area in Rivers State, Hon. Akara Okechukwu, has reiterated that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) would win all positions from governor to state House of Assembly.
He stated that the foundation of victory had been laid by the Governor of the state, Chief Nyesom Wike, following his infrastructure development successes in the state.
Okechukwu said this while reacting after the state PDP campaign team visited his area, last Saturday, saying that the people of Oyigbowere ready to reciprocate what the present administration has done for the LGA in every aspect.
“I have no fear, and I am convinced that the Governorship candidate of PDP Siminialayi Fubara and other state candidates of the PDP will win.
“The people of Oyigbo have vowed to vote massively for PDP because that is the only way to pay back Governor Wike for his good works, mostly in Oyigbo.
“As I speak, 95percent of people living in the area have their Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs), and this indicates sure victory for our great party. I thank the people for coming out enmasse for the campaign, I am really happy,” Okechukwu said.
Speaking, Chairman, Revenue Committee of the LGA, Senibo Daniel Chijindu, described the massive turn out as historic, saying that it was an indication of total victory.
“I will say that the massive turn out of people was historic because this is the first time people came out enmasse for campaign. Honestly, this is an indication that Oyigbo was ‘Simplified’ and was totally for PDP.
“Governor Wike has given Rivers State, a facelift in all ramifications. That is why Oyigbo people said they are for PDP in totality,” he said.
The revenue boss advised those who register for PVC should go and collect their PVC because that is only way to sustain the good governance of PDP.
Also speaking, former commissioner for commerce and industry and stakeholder of PDP in Oyigbo, Hon. Nancy Nwankwo, said adequate sensitisation has been done for the importance of PVC and vote PDP.
According to her, women in Oyigbowere already prepared to celebrate the victory of SiminialayiFubara come May this year, saying they come out enmasse to vote for PDP.
“I am convinced that SimFubara will do better hence he is civil servant. He has proven his intellectual capacity faithful and truthful to replace Governor Wike,” she said.

By: Tonye Orabere

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NCDC Confirms 38 Deaths Of 123 Diphtheria Cases …Says Gaps In Vaccination Coverage Fuelling Outbreak

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No fewer than 38 persons have died out of the 123 diphtheria cases recorded in Nigeria so far, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), has confirmed.
The states currently facing the disease caused by serious infection of the nose and throat that is easily preventable by vaccine, are Kano, Lagos, Yobe and Osun, respectively.
The nation’s disease control and prevention agency, which disclosed this at a ministerial press briefing, organised by the Federal Ministry of Health, said more cases of the disease were being expected in days ahead, as it spreads to other places.
Speaking through its Director of Special Duties, Dr Priscilla Ibekwe, NCDC said: “As of January 22, NCDC have 123 confirmed cases and 38 deaths. 100 cases are from Kano, with 32 deaths. In Lagos there are five cases with three deaths. In Yobe, there 17 confirmed cases and three deaths, and Osun has recorded one case with no death”.
According to Ibekwe, besides clinically suspected cases, there have been laboratory-confirmed cases.
Ibekwe said the agency was working with state ministries of health and partners to enhance surveillance and response to the outbreak.
She said,”Given the sub-optimal coverage for the third dose of the diphtheria containing pentavalent vaccine (54percent – 2021 MICS & NICS) in the country, we expect more cases from more states.
“The centre has collaborated with the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) to organize a 5-day workshop on enhancing laboratory diagnosis of diphtheria in Nigeria for laboratory scientists working in NCDC’s National Reference Laboratories and its lab network (this was planned before cases were reported as part of preparedness), and;
“Written to all states HCHs to institute immediate and necessary public health measures for timely detection and response to diphtheria at state level”.
Speaking on measures being put in place to prevent the disease from spreading further, Ibekwe said NCDC has published a public health advisory, accessible on its website, which educates Nigerians on risk factors and offers advice.
She said:”Parents ensuring that their children are fully vaccinated against diphtheria with 3 doses of the pentavalent vaccine. Healthcare workers should maintain a high index of suspicion for diphtheria”.
She also spoke on how to better understand and contain the prevailing global outbreaks of SARS-CoV-2 COVID-19 variants.
She said:”The sub-lineages i.e., XBB.1.5 partly responsible for the current increase in COVID-19 cases in the US and elsewhere countries have not yet been detected in the country.
“However, this variant has not been associated with increased severity of illness and now appears to be levelling off.
“The variants reported in China so far have been those circulating globally including in Nigeria for some time.”
However, the Nigeria Centre of Disease Control and Prevention has attributed the current outbreak of diphtheria in some parts of Nigeria to a drop in the childhood vaccination coverage in some areas of the country.
The Director-General of the Agency, Dr Ifedayo Adetifa, who spoke about the development on a television programme, said that there were 34 deaths recorded over the weekend from the outbreak which hit four states.
He said due to the effectiveness of the childhood vaccination programme, most people have forgotten what it looks like.
He said, “Diphtheria, a vaccine preventable disease that used to be common decades ago is on the increase in some states in Nigeria. The fact that there is a resurgence suggests that there is significant reduction in vaccination coverage among pockets of the population and this reduced pockets of immunity has given rise to the cases we have seen.
“It is not a matter of diphtheria spreading from state to state, the bacteria that causes the disease is present everywhere and it spreads, and any state in which you find the disease now is likely to be associated with suboptimal vaccination rates, either in general or in particular in pockets of population. Failure of childhood vaccination in the failed states causing the diphtheria outbreaks.
“Kano has highest number of cases followed by Yobe, by weekend, there were 34 deaths in total.”
He warned that although diphtheria was highly preventable and treatable, fatality can increase without antibiotics and appropriate conditions, including the diphtheria antitoxin. He assured that with early detection and prompt treatment, the fatal outcomes are usually low.
Adetifa stressed that the really severe cases require the diphtheria antitoxin, even as he assured that the NCDC had distributed vials of the antitoxin since December for use in Lagos and Kano states, and was planning to extend availability to every state where the disease cases are found.
“It is important that patients should be recognised early, and laboratory confirmation carried out so that treatment can commence immediately.”
Adetifa said there were arrangements for trainings of personnel for laboratory diagnosis of the toxin including testing for most of the clinical effects.
“We are in a good state to help, but patients need to be recognised early and diagnosis made quickly and they are placed on the right treatment.
“We are using the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency, NPHCDA data to predict high risk states, there is connection with low socioeconomic situation, and we need to look out for healthcare workers who can be given courses of antibiotics.

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Long-Hour Fasting, Danger To Kidney, NAFDAC Warns

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The Director General of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Prof. MojisolaAdeyeye, has advised Nigerians against subjecting themselves to long-hour fasting, saying it was risky to their kidneys.
Adeyeye, who attributed the high rate of kidney problems in Nigeria to prolonged fasting by some religious adherents, insisted that those subjecting themselves to prolonged fasting on religious grounds must moderate the act.
She spoke in Abuja, yesterday, while briefing the media on the breakthrough by her agency in tracking high consignments of Tramadol and other pharmaceuticals to the Republic of Benin.
On the high rate of kidney problems in the country, she said: “Kidney failure, we are a very religious country- Muslims and Christians fast a lot and it is part of the kidney problem.
“Your body has to have homeomistatic balance, meaning that the water level in your body must be enough to make your organs to function.
“Some people will fast for 10 or 20 days and drink only little water, the kidney is being punished. Now, if you put chemicals in it, it triples in exponential manner, it damages the kidney because the kidney doesn’t have water to dilute and filter.”
Adeyeye, who tasked Nigerians to fast but with common sense, added: “I fast but with common sense. We have to fast with common sense; otherwise we will pay with our kidneys.”

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