ADDRESS THE OUTRIGHT MARGINALIZATION OF ITSEKIRI NATION IN PROJECT EXECUTION, EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES AND THE RECENTLY ANNOUNCED 57 MARGINAL FIELDS OFFER IN 14 DAYS OR WE SHUTDOWN OPERATIONS OF INTERNATIONAL OIL AND GAS COMPANIES (IOCs) IN OUR LAND

We are not oblivious of the damaging socio-economic effects COVID-19 is


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ADDRESS THE OUTRIGHT MARGINALIZATION OF ITSEKIRI NATION IN PROJECT EXECUTION, EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES AND THE RECENTLY ANNOUNCED 57 MARGINAL FIELDS OFFER IN 14 DAYS OR WE SHUTDOWN OPERATIONS OF INTERNATIONAL OIL AND GAS COMPANIES (IOCs) IN OUR LAND
President Muhammadu Buhari

 

MOVEMENT FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF ITSEKIRI OIL/GAS PRODUCING COMMUNITIES

(MDIOGPC) 

 

       Thursday June 25, 2020

 

Your Excellency

 

Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR

 

President and Commander-In-Chief of the Armed Forces

 

Federal Republic of Nigeria

 

Aso Villa

 

Abuja.

 

Sir,

 

ADDRESS THE OUTRIGHT MARGINAZATION OF ITSEKIRI NATION IN PROJECT EXECUTION, EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES AND THE RECENTLY ANNOUNCED 57 MARGINAL FIELDS OFFER IN 14 DAYS OR WE SHUTDOWN OPERATIONS OF INTERNATIONAL OIL AND GAS COMPANIES (IOCs) IN OUR LAND

 

We are not oblivious of the damaging socio-economic effects COVID-19 is inflicting on the global economy, particularly our country that has continued to bear the brunt of the volatility of the price of Crude Oil (The Black Gold) at the International Market, despite efforts by OPEC and OPEC + to mitigate the resulting challenge.

 

Your Excellency, as a responsive and law abiding Ethnic Nationality committed to the sustainable peace, growth and development of the Nigerian project, we are equally not unmindful of the teething security challenges your administration is confronting headlong across the country, especially in the North East. We are however constrained to ventilate our frustration and anger, regarding the brazen and worsening marginalization staring at our face on daily basis, by those in charge of managing affairs in the Oil and Gas Sector in this country. By this, we mean the Federal Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and its subsidiaries such as NAPIMS and DPR.

 

The marginalization is also clearly evident in the way and manner your administration shockingly abandoned the Multi-Billion Dollar Gas Revolution Industrial Park Project and Deep Sea Port in Warri South- West Local Government Area, Delta State. The project has the potential to create thousands of direct and indirect jobs as well as boost the economic diversification narrative, a supposedly core philosophy of your administration.

 

We are also at a loss as to why the age-long Omadino - Escravos Road, expected to connect the Oil and Gas- rich Coastal Communities in Warri South and Warri South-West Local Government Areas, remain abandoned till date, despite exploitation of the huge natural resources from the area.

 

Despite the hue and cry from different Itsekiri groups and professional bodies, urging you to direct the relevant Federal Government MDAs such as Federal Ministry of Works, Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs and NDDC as well as the multi-national oil and gas companies, to immediately embark on large scale shore protection/sand-filling projects in Itsekiri riverine/oil producing communities, your administration has continued to play dumb on the exigency to save our riverine/oil producing communities from rampaging Ocean Surge.

 

We, the Itsekiri people continue to agonize the apparent aberration of the Local Content Act as it affects direct employment opportunities into Chevron Nigeria Limited, Shell Petroleum Development Company, SPDC and other IOCs, operating in our communities. These companies surreptitiously employ non-indigenes and fly them to work in Escravos and other Itsekiri Offshore Locations, while our eminently qualified graduates as well as technicians roam the streets and continue to live at the mercy of their indigent and aging parents.

 

Sir, we wish to put it on good record that the Itsekiri Ethnic Nationality has been grossly marginalized in bid offers, since the discovery of Crude Oil in our Homeland over 60 years ago.           

 

This is despite the huge environment hazards, poor sanitary conditions, lack of health care facilities and zero Federal Presence in any of the Itsekiri Oil and Gas Producing/Impacted Communities in the Niger Delta. The Itsekiri Nation contributes over 28% of Nigeria's Crude Oil & Gas Resources.

 

Having established a slice of the strength of our contribution to the commonwealth of the country, we must at this juncture strongly express our displeasure and total rejection of the recently announced 57 Marginal Fields, offered by the Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR. We can no longer continue to sit down and watch non-indigenes, being offered Oil Mining Licenses in our homeland, when we have capable Itsekiri Sons and Daughters, whose firms are qualified, but repeatedly denied such licenses by the sustained-structural bias of the DPR.

 

We challenge the Federal Ministry of Petroleum Resources, NNPC and its subsidiaries within the next 14 days to publish the names/companies that own Crude Oil Blocs in Delta State. Because records available to us, indicate that no indigenous Itsekiri from the oil producing communities has or operates Oil bloc in the State, even though the Crude Oil and Gas Resources are exploited in our God-given land.     

 

The Federal Government often complain of the negative impact the twin evil; Crude Oil Theft and Pipeline Vandalism across the country (especially the Niger Delta) have on the economy, but suffices to emphasis that the continuous neglect of Itsekiris from oil/gas producing communities in your administration and opening up investment opportunities for them in the Oil and Gas Sector, can only aggravate Crude Oil Theft and Pipeline Vandalism.     

 

Our Demands:

 

· We are calling on you to immediately halt the current process of bids for the 57 Marginal Fields and come up with new modalities, where competent companies owned by Itsekiri Sons and Daughters, would be given "right of first refusal: on fields in our homeland, before being thrown open to outsiders. 

 

· If competent companies owned by Itsekiri indigenes are not considered by DPR for the 57 Marginal Fields in the next 14days, with effect from Friday June 26, we will shut-down operations of the multi-national oil and gas companies (IOCs) operating in our homelands.

 

· Order immediate resumption of work at the Multi-Billion Dollar Gas Revolution Industrial Park Project, GRIP and Deep Sea Port in Warri South- West Local Government Area, Delta State.

 

· Direct the relevant MDAs/IOCs to embark on large scale shore protection/sand-filling projects in Itsekiri riverine/oil producing communities.

 

· Institute process for the facilitation of the abandoned age-long Omadino - Escravos Road.

 

Your Excellency, we eagerly await your immediate action, to avert fresh crisis in the Oil and Gas Industry.

 

Signed

 

ISAAC BOTOSAN

Chairman

                                  

IRONE MAURICE 

Secretary

                              

STEVEN ATETE

Publicity Secretary

                                                     

CC:

 

· The Minister of Defence

 

· The Chief of Defence Staff

 

· The Chief of Army Staff

 

· The Chief of Naval Staff

 

· The DG of DSS

 

· Delta State Governor

 

· Chairmen of Warri South, Warri South-West and Warri NorthLocal Government Areas of Delta  

 

· The Multi-National Oil and Gas Companies, IOCs (E.g SPDC and CNL)

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