AKHA MOVES FOR DPR, NAPIMS, EXXONMOBIL HQTRs TO AKS

AKHA MOVES FOR DPR, NAPIMS, EXXONMOBIL HQTRs TO AKS

Enwono-Abasi Elisha

The Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly has resolved that Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS) and ExxonMobil headquarters be moved to the State.

The motion on Relocation of Head Offices of Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS) to Akwa Ibom State sponsored by Rt. Hon. Emmanuel Ekpenyong, Member representing Ini State Constituency also doubling as the Chief whip of the 7th Assembly; came on the heels of recent development in the country which the State needs to follow suit.

According to the wordings of the motion, “Akwa Ibom State contributes about 33 % of Nigeria’s daily volume of oil production and is by far the highest oil producing State in Nigeria.

“Whereas oil and gas have remained the lifeblood of the nation’s economy for decades accounting for over 85% of the country’s foreign exchange earnings.

“Whereas adverse environmental impacts ensue from crude oil and natural gas production such as air and ground water pollution, damage to flora and fauna, exposure of biota to contaminants and other health and physical hazards and these adverse effects are borne by the people of Akwa Ibom State.

“Whereas crude oil and natural gas production has forced indigenes of Akwa Ibom state out of their ancestral lands and destroyed timeless and priceless aretefacts and relics.

“Whereas the Federal Government has domiciled the headquarters of one or more affiliates or subsidiaries of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) in the oil producing States in the South-South Region of Nigeria except Akwa Ibom State.

“Whereas Bayelsa State hosts the head office of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB); Rivers State hosts the head office of the Niger Delta Development Commissions (NDDC) and refinery; Delta State hosts the Petroleum Training Institute (PTI); Edo State hosts the head office of the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC); there is no oil industry federal presence in Akwa Ibom State.

“Whereas as the saying goes ‘to whom much is given, much is expected’. Akwa Ibom State having given the highest volume of oil and revenue to the Federal Republic of Nigeria expects the Federal Government to relocate the head offices of two NNPC subsidiaries, namely Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS) to Akwa Ibom State.

“Whereas the relocation of the head offices of Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS) to Akwa Ibom State will have the ripple effect of forcing ExxonMobil t also relocate its headquarters to Akwa Ibom State.”

Making their contributions on the matter, Legislators spoke unanimously in support of the tone of the motion for the offices of these oil bodies to be located in the State.

According to Rt. Hon. Mark Esset, speaking for Nsit Atai State people, the lawmaker made clear the need of the presence of these oil bodies in the State by locating their offices in the State.

“I want to speak as a patriotic Akwaibomite. What brought about youth restiveness in the Niger Delta sometime ago was when the youths realized the money from oil producing States was used to develop Abuja and the communities languished in abject poverty.

“River State Government threatened to close down NDDC. It has come to a point in this country that if you do not speak up and stand up for your right, nothing will be done. Is time we match our words with actions.

“Akwa Ibom State Government should demand that in no time that the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) be relocated to the State. Relevant bodies and our representatives in the National Assembly should be notified appropriately.”

The member representing Ibesikpo State Constituency, Rt. Hon. Aniekan Uko virtually vented anger questioning why the oil organisations should take the State for granted. He made a suggestion for the AKHA to lead a peaceful protest to Quo Iboe Terminal (QIT), Eket.

Esit Eket/Ibeno representative, Rt. Hon. Usoro Akpanusoh in his contribution said during the time of Barr. Bassey Essien as the Speaker of the AKHA, Mobil Producing Nigeria then was shut down which action gave rise to the recognition of Akwaibomites to key positions in the organisation.

He added that oil producing communities are impoverished by oil production which he is trying to liaise with the Ministry of Environment to domesticate Local Content Law.

The Leader of the House, Rt. Hon. Udo Kierian with other members from Onna, Mbo, Nsit Ubium, Ibiono Ibom and Ikot Ekpene State Constituencies in their respective contributions spoke unanimously for the House to take appropriate action to facilitate the moving of the offices of these oil organization and departments to the State.

However, the House under the leadership of Rt. Hon. Aniekan Bassey resolved that Akwa Ibom State being the highest oil producing State in Nigeria, yet the only major oil producing State without and Federal Government oil industry related establishment, should urged NNPC to bring the head offices of the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS) to the State; and ExxonMobil relocate their headquarter to the State.

A copy of the resolution should be forwarded to His Excellency, Muhammadu Buhari, the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and also forwarded to our representative in the National Assembly.

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