Delta communities give NDDC, others 21 days to return to abandoned projects

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STARTING from Monday, Ijaw people of Tsekelewu and Polobobou communities, Egbema kingdom, Warri North Local Government Area, Delta State, have given the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) 21-day  ultimatum to commence all abandoned projects in their communities.

Failure to do so, the people vowed, would lead to civil unrest and disruption of operation of oil companies in the kingdom.

Besides NDDC, the people are also calling on Chevron Nigeria Limited to commence the dredging of Tsekelewu and Pelobobou creek for easy accessibility to their communities.

They reiterated that Chevron’s operations in their area had succeeded in converting their creeks to ordinary land and gradually becoming inaccessible.

The 21-day ultimatum is contained in a  statement signed by President and Secretary of Tsekelewu and Polobobou Communities, Comrade Marvis Ofiyai and Asoki Victor respectively, on behalf of the people and made available to the Nigerian Tribune in Warri at the weekend.

They said NDDC’s failure to live up to her responsibilities to their communities with respect to about five major projects initiated in 2005, but abandoned, necessitated the 21-day ultimatum.

“Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) should use the statutory allocation from oil companies to develop oil producing communities such as tackling the case of Tsekelewu & Polobobou canalisation project urgently before it will lead to gross protest that may shock the world.

“The Federal and state governments should compel Chevron Nigeria Ltd and NDDC to dredge Tsekelewu and Polobobou Creeks for easy accessibility to our communities.

“The only way we can guarantee peace is to address our demands timely.

“If this dredging issue is not addressed, we promise we will disrupt the operation of Chevron Nigeria Ltd.

The canalization of Tsekelewu & Polobobou communities creek was awarded by Niger Delta Development Commission in 2005, but it has been abandoned till date and other four water projects from NDDC were also abandoned.

The commission has not impacted Tsekelewu and Polobobou communities positively since inception till date,” the people lamented.

The communities also called for road construction, the sand-filling of their communities to avoid being washed away by ocean surge and their involvement in skills and acquisition programmes of NDDC among others.

It will be recalled that Tsekelewu and Polobobou communities are hosts to multinational oil companies such as CNL Opuekeba Platform, NPDC/Elcrest Exploration & Production Nigeria Ltd Opuama Flow station and Sahara Energy which contribute to Nigeria’s daily oil production output.