Come back fully, we’ll protect your interest, Okowa appeals to SPDC
GOVERNOR of Delta State, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa, has appealed to Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) to fully return to oil-rich Warri, promising to provide an absolute conducive environment for the oil giant to operate.
Okowa made the plea on Thursday during the inauguration of the N123 million Ugborodo Ultra-modern Town Hall project donated by the SPDC Joint Venture to the community.
The governor, who was represented by his commissioner for Oil and Gas, Mr Mofe Pirah, disclosed that the state government would continue to provide a conducive business environment for the private sectors to operate.
He assured that his administration would continue to upgrade infrastructure in Warri and environs so that other industries that moved out of Warri could return.
Okowa expressed hope that with the proposed dredging of the Escravos bar by the Federal Government, more businesses would return to Warri, which, he described as the industrial hub of the state.
“I appeal to the industries that moved out of Warri during the crisis to come back, Warri is ranked among the most peaceful cities in the country.
“I want to also plead with Shell to return the full complement of its western operations back to Warri.
“The state government will continue to provide a conducive environment for the private sector to operate, that is why we keep our doors opened to receive genuine suggestions and partnership in every area of human endeavours,” he said.
Okowa described the town hall project as a good example of social corporate responsibility, adding that it was a way of building bridges of confidence and trust between the SPDC and the people.
He appealed to the Ugborodo people to use the facilities with the maximum sense of responsibility.
Meanwhile, the Olu of Warri, Ogiame Ikenwoli, who also graced the occasion, advised Itsekiris, especially the youth against obstructing developmental projects in the community.
“I thank the community for creating the enabling environment for this project to succeed. Youth are supposed to be agents of development so you should support Shell to attract more development,” he said.
The General Manager, External Relations of SPDC, Mr Igo Weli, while responding, said the 500-capacity ultra-modern town hall has five offices, meeting room for 18 persons, one ICT room, a store and convenience.
He said the N123 million project was chosen by the Ugborodo community as their priority needs and was directly supervised by the Ugborodo Project Community Trust under a Project Management Committee arrangement.
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“I appealed to the community to support the Ugborodo Project Community Trust to ensure maintenance of the town hall.
“It is our hope that Ugborodo and other host communities would work towards the successful establishment of a functional Global Memorandum of Understanding (GMoU) cluster in this area,” he said.
On his part, President Ugborodo Community P-GMoU, Mr Victor Omunu, who was represented by his Financial Secretary, Mr Christian Akpeyi, thanked Shell for the project and promised to make good use of it.
Contrary to insinuations SPDC has left Delta nay Warri, the oil giant still operates at the Forcados Export Terminal and one other platform, as the company only divesting most of its facilities in Delta to some indigenous oil companies in the state.
Ugborodo community in Warri South-West Local Government Area, which boiled recently over internal rancour, is host to many oil multinationals including Chevron Nigeria Ltd.
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