BAYELSA COMMUNITY THREATENS SHELL OPERATION
By Samuel Oyadongha
Yenagoa - The people of Nembe Kingdom in the Bayelsa East senatorial district have threatened to disrupt the operations of Shell Petroleum Development Company, SPDC, over what they described as the refusal of the company to provide their community electricity.
The Nembe Kingdom through its Oil and Gas Committee chairman, Chief Nengi James-Eriworio, yesterday, called on the oil company to fast track the ongoing power project in the area with a view to connecting the coastal island to the Nembe Creek turbine on or before March 2012 or risk the shutting down of its operations in the area.
Lamenting the plight of his people, he said: 'It is appalling that the Nembe Kingdom, which contributes over 90,000 barrels of crude oil per day to the Nigerian state and boasts of hundreds of oil wells and four flow stations operated by Shell has continued to live in perpetual darkness.
'The people of Nembe Kingdom will no longer continue to die in silence and be patient over the deliberate denial of power supply by Shell to its host community, particularly the Nembe city despite the fact that the oil multinational had carried out oil exploration for decades with little or no significant contribution to the lives and well-being of our people.
'It is instructive to note that the power generating plant for the community has not only broken down but can no longer be maintained because of the increase in the electricity consumption demand occasioned by the ever growing population of the community.'
Describing as unacceptable, the current casual employment offered their youths, the community called for the employment of their people into top management positions as well as providing them on-the-job training opportunities.