Group Seeks Compensation For Oil Spill Victims
A Pan Ijaw Ethnic organisation, the Kalabari Frontiers has expressed dismay over total neglect by AITEO Eastern Exploration and Production Limited, after mega oil spillage in OML 29, Well One of Sancta Barbara field, Kula, in Akuku-Toru Local Government Area in the State.
Speaking, while briefing journalists in Port Harcourt, Engr. Ineye Jack, who spoke on behalf of the organisation, appealed to the company to send relief materials to the communities affected by the oil spillage.
According to him, same oil spillage that affected Basambiri/Opu Nembe communities, in Bayelsa State, were attended to through compensations and relief materials, leaving out communities (Owuangain communities in Kula) that were mostly affected.
“We therefore condemn this unpatriotic neglect, insensitivity and colossal failure on the part of AITEO, the operators of the oil field and the Federal Government of Nigeria who have the duty to protect lives and properties of its citizens and to stop environmental degradations.
“Consequently, we give the AITEO 48-hour notice to send relief materials without any further delay to the impacted communities of Owoanga, Kula and other communities in Kalabari axis and interface with the affected communities,” Engr”. Jack said.
According to Engr. Ineye, precisely on 5th of November, 2021, a mega oil spill occurred in OML 29 Well One, which is located at Owuangain communities along Sancta Barbara River, uncontentiously owned by and inhabited by the Aboriginal Kula people of Kalabari Kingdom, in Akuku-Toru Local Government Area of Rivers State.
He explained that if their demands were not met within the time frame given to them, the communities will have no option than to seek legal option to press home their legitimate demands.
He was the demand for compensation was because spill had spread to the entire Kalabari coastlines.
NG Care Beneficiaries Appeal For Payment
Some small and medium scale business owners in Rivers State that applied for NG Care grant, staged a peaceful protest recently to the State Ministry of Commerce and Industry in Port Harcourt over non-payment.
In their protest, they appealed to the newly sworn in Governor of the State, Sir Siminalayi Fubara to look into their complaints and direct the Ministry to pay those that Bank of Industry had nominated for payment.
NG Care grant was World Bank’s assisted grant to Nigeria to cushion the effects of COVID-19 for registered and unregistered small and medium scale business owners. The Federal Government has equally disbursed the money to all the 36 States including FCT to pay those that the Bank of Industry had screened and nominated.
Speaking, the Consultant and facilitor of the scheme in the State, Prince Amezhin Atuma, expressed sadness over the delay to pay those persons that are due.
According to him, about 5,000 persons have been nominated by Bank of Industry for payment after screening, adding that he does not know what is delaying the payment.
“ As I know, the Federal Government has disbursed the money to all the States and I can authoritatively say Delta and Bayelsa States have paid, I don’t know what is holding our own here in Rivers State.
“I perceived foul play because the State Ministry of Commerce and Industry only paid 173. We expected them to be transparent in their dealings.
“Consequently, we are appealing to His Excellency Sir Siminalayi Fubara to please look into the matter and direct the Ministry to pay those nominated by the Bank of Industry”, he said.
Speaking, Matilda Robinson, one of the protesters said the Ministry should please pay them their money because other States have paid , besides, it was long overdue.’’
She explained that they have fullfilled all the required processes needed for the grant and they have also been nominated to be paid.
Also speaking, Dandy Francis Egba, also appealed to the authorities to pay the grant to those nominated, saying, they had suffered to go through the rigorous processes to be nominated.
“ I don’t know why Rivers State Ministry of Commerce and Industry is making things difficult for us? Many States have paid without bias,’’ he stated.
However, the Ministry has assured them of payment soonest.
By: Tonye Orabere
Bonny People Celebrate Lawmaker’s Inauguration
It was celebration galore on Monday as some political bigwigs, admirers and well wishers from Bonny Local Government Area of Rivers State gathered at the Rivers State House of Assembly Complex in Port Harcourt and rejoiced over the inauguration of the lawmaker representing Bonny State Constituency, Hon Victor Jumbo in the State House of Assembly.
It would be recalled that the Governor of the State, Sir Siminalayi Fubara on Monday proclaimed the 10th Rivers State House of Assembly, and Hon Jumbo was one of the lawmakers sworn in following his landslide victory at the poll.
The lawmaker, who was accompanied by thousands of enthusiastic supporters, People’s Democratic Party(PDP) faithful and political bigwigs, among others on that fateful day later proceeded to his official quarters in Port Harcourt for the reception.
Some of the personalities who spoke with newsmen described the Lawmaker’s victory at the poll and his subsequent inauguration as the beginning of a new vista and dawn for the Bonny people.
According to them, Hon Jumbo deserves to be in the State Assembly following his antecedents and remarkable goodwill.
“The crowd being seen here is pointing to the fact that Hon Jumbo has touched lives through his hard-earned money even when he had not occupied any position and office. His leadership qualities by far surpass those of his contemporaries, this being the reason the people stood by him till date. He has been tested and trusted and found to be capable to represent the people of Bonny in any capacity”, they said.
They further indicated that the lawmaker has truly paid his dues particularly in terms of rendering selfless services to humanity, stressing that his philanthropic gestures are second to none, even as his act of carrying everyone along remains unbeatable, hence, the people’s massive support for him.
They said, “Bonny is happy for his enormous contributions as the people have no doubt that he would live up to their expectations. We expect quality representation from him and also the ability to sponsor bills capable of affecting his people. We believe that he will never be left out as far as major decisions of the House are concerned.He will collaborate with his colleagues to support the Executive to deliver good governance to Rivers people.The immediate past Governor left indelible footprints in the State. We expect both the Executive and the Legislature to consolidate on this in the interest of the State.”
The Chairman of Bonny Local Government Council; PDP Chairman; councillors and supervisory councillors, among others were at hand to celebrate with the lawmaker.
Northern Group Honours Monarch
The Eze Oha Evo III of Evo Kingdom, King Leslie Nyebuchi Eke Jp, Eze Gbakagbaka, has received an “Outstanding Award” by the Northern Youth Council of Nigeria (NYCN) over what they described as an excellent cross state/tribal relationship.
The award, Christine’s “Jakadan Zaman Lafia Najeriya/Icon Cynosure Of Nation Building”, was conferred on King Eke by the leadership of the group at his palace in Woji in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area recently.
In his reaction, he said he would never be in support of any rebellious youth group.
According to the monarch, his hard earned reputation and task to protect the image of the Kingdom was the reason for his stand.
The monarch, who hinted on his past active Youth activities in the country, called on the Youth to always persue peace vigorously.
He told them to be bold in confronting negative actions and not to shilly-shally in supporting positive ventures.
“There are processes of conflict resolution. If you need me for negative actions you cannot find me”, he said.
The Evo King also warned his guests not to be part of the group that fight government, and as such would not give the right definition of their organisation.
Earlier, the leader of the youth group, Amb Comrade Danladi Iliya, said its search light located the Evo King from a distance, especially the Northerners that have lived in the Kingdom.
Iliya, who also is the group’s Director of Research and Programme, said His Majesty was futher considered for the award due to his peaceful deposition.
The Northern youth body, which noted that the award was in line with the spirit and character of its founding fathers like Sir Ahmadu Bello, said the award was basically conferred to the Ikwerre King, due to his excellent character and good public image, it cuts across the 19 Northern states plus the Federal Capital Territory.
By: King Onunwor
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