HOSCON urges FG to deploy gas flare penalty to fund modular refineries

Prof. Jasper Jumbo, National Chairman of HOSCON

Prof. Jasper Jumbo, National Chairman of HOSCON

By Okafor Ofiebor /Port Harcourt

The Host Communities of Nigeria Producing Oil and Gas (HOSCON) on Wednesday appealed to Federal Government to expeditiously release accumulated gas flare penalty fund to build the proposed modular refineries.

Prof.Jasper Jumbo, the National Chairman of HOSCON made the appeal during the 2022 Validation Annual Conference held with government and security Officials in Port Harcourt.

Jumbo said that the conference with the theme “Reviving Nigerian’s HOSCON Oil and Gas Communities for Inclusiveness and Sustainable Development” was aimed at strategically repositioning and advancing the inclusive stakeholders of oil and gas community units to enhance the growth of the communities.

Jumbo stated that the conference resolutions demands the unmitigated release of the accumulated and earlier approved gas flare penalty fund and part thereof to be applied by the committee the federal government is expected to set up by Executive Fiat for its management, be made to own and complimentarily set up some of the proposed artisanal pilot modular refineries.

“We fully support Federal Government’s initiative to set up three pilot modular refineries in each Niger Delta States that would hopefully correct the fragile and flawed past.

“We also thank the federal and state government, as well as house of representatives for strong messages sent, indicating signal of government’s intent to halt the debilitating effects and anxious emission from illegal oil bunkering, through host community involvement, application of indigenous technologies and subsidized funding.

“We plead with the federal government through the National Assembly to put a clause in the 3 per cent Petroleum Industry Act to 5 per cent in the near future in spite of the rising production costs and allow the host communities to choose their management for trust fund,”he said.

“We want the federal government through the Niger Delta Development Commission(NDDC) led by Sen.Godwin Akpabio and Bar.Effiong Akwa to call for and settle the long outstanding Bill’s of genuine and performing NDDC contractors for executed projects, especially the founding fathers of the defunct OMPADEC, NDDC and Traditional rulers of the host oil and gas producing communities.

In his speech,Gen. Ahmed Abubakar, the Commandant General of Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps (NSCDC)represented by Dr.Evelyn Ebitume, an Assistant Commander General of the Corps, said that the agency would continue to carry out its mandate on the protection of oil and gas pipelines in the country.

He stated that activities of vandals led to economic wastage and urged the youths and the public from host communities who live near the pipelines to avail the agency the information that will help them in curbing the activities of the oil and gas pipeline vandals and bring the offenders to book.

Similarly, Bonaventure Enemali, Anambara State Commissioner for Land urged every community leader of the HOSCON to ensure that the voice of their community is heard.

Enemali urged chiefs in host communities not to neglect the interest of their people while negotiating with Oil Companies in their areas.

The states that endorsed the conference resolutions were Abia, Anambara, Akwa-Ibom, Bayelsa, Delta, Imo, Ondo and Rivers.

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