Pauline Onyibe, Yenagoa
The Pan Niger Delta Forum has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to give all the International Oil Companies (OICs) in the the Niger Delta a presidential order to move their operational headquarters to the region without any further delay.
In a statement issues to New Telegraph on Monday by Ken Robinson PANDEF’s National Publicity Secretary, the group said that March 2022 should be the deadline for the presidential order.
The statement read in part that: “It is baffling that, over four years after, the Federal Government has continued to show apathy in enforcing its directive, thereby denying the region the benefits derivable from the relocation of the IOCs. That is a grave disservice to those in whose land the industry operates.
“Meanwhile, oil and gas exploration activities continue to degrade the region’s ecosystem and attenuate the peoples’ means of livelihood, with little or no effort to ameliorate their consequential dire standard of living.
“Blandishments are no longer acceptable. PANDEF doesn’t need to recall that it was in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom State capital, that the Vice President, as acting President, in March 2017, gave the directive to International Oil Companies (IOCs) to relocate their operational headquarters to the Niger Delta, during a Town Hall meeting in continuation of his visit to the region, to dialogue with stakeholders.
“The entire South-South Zone could be turned into a huge economic corridor and a global high-value industrial hub. What is needed now, is purposeful, planned and strong regional integration. The governments and people of the zone have to work together with greater understanding, at various levels.”