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HOSTCOM Shuts Otorogun Gas Plant In Delta Over Alleged Marginalisation

Source: thewillnigeria.com
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BEVERLY HILLS, August 18, (THEWILL) – A group of protesters under the auspices of Host Communities of Nigeria Producing Oil and Gas (HOSTCOM) in OMLs 30, 34 and 65 on Tuesday shut down the Otorogun gas plant in Ughelli South Local Government Area of Delta State.

The protesters were protesting what they alleged as the continued marginalisation of host communities by authorities of the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC).

THEWILL recalls that the leadership of group had last week issued a seven-day ultimatum to the management of NPDC to resolve all outstanding issues with the host communities. The ultimatum has since expired.

Addressing the protesters shortly after the shut down, Chairman of Urhobo HOSTCOM, Comrade Efe Okowvurie, who led the protest, said; “Following the expiration of the seven-day ultimatum given to NPDC to implement the resolution earlier reached with HOSTCOM, the host communities decided to shut down the Otorogun gas plant.”

Okowvurie explained that NPDC and HOSTCOM had an agreement on 30th June, 2015, in which NPDC agreed to pay all the outstanding salaries of community workers in OMLs 30, 34 and 65 which are in arrears of between six to nine months. He said NPDC has however refused to pay the workers and the contractor.

He urged the federal government to compel NPDC to fully implement the resolution it signed with HOSTCOM on 30th June, adding the host communities were not ready to re-open the facilities until NPDC implements the resolution.

The protesters also warned NPDC not to reduce the 20 percent mark-up attached to contracts being handled by indigenous contractors to 15 percent, adding that such will instigate crisis in the host communities and create more troubles for NPDC.

THEWILL however learnt that the Delta State Government has invited the management of NPDC and leaders of HOSTCOM for an urgent meeting in Asaba, the state capital, to resolve the dispute.