Leaders of Diebiri-Batan community and host to Oil Mining Lease, OML, 42, in Warri South Council of Delta State have called on the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company, NPDC, to withdraw its multi billion dollars dredging and sweeping contracts in the oil field.
They are also compelling the NPDC to pay all outstanding oil spill compensations and clean up the area according to the federal government and international environmental best practice.
The leaders warned the indigenous oil company to halt all activities on the field pending the resolution of contentious issues, explaining that revoking the contracts will allow both parties come to peaceful understanding and agreement that will ensure smooth oil production.
In a petition addressed to the managing director of NPDC, the leaders accused the company of marginalising the community three years after it entered into a pact with them to clean up spills, pay compensations, develop the community and carry out its operations in accordance with international best practice.
The petition, which was also sent to other relevant agencies, was signed by Chief Samson Amakubukro, Deacon Wellington Igetei, Engineer Albert Amakubukro, Pastor Ako Samuel, Eric Numa, Prince Emmanuel Orugbene, Henry Suoware and Hon. Moses Douglas.
According to them, chairmen from the host communities were coaxed into granting them and Neconde Group, its major contractor, Freedom To Operate, FTOs, while the community vendors who participated in the bid were not well briefed about the contracts thus denying them participation in it.
These, they noted, were against the provisions of the Memorandum of Understanding which both parties signed in 2012 when the firm took over the field after the divestment by Shell Petroleum Development Company.
“It is pertinent to remind you that since you took over operations of OML 42 in 2012 to date, 3 years ago, you have not embarked on one development project in our community in spite of all MOU’s signed or entered into with your organization which demonstrates the height of violation and highest provocation that indigenous people experience under your operation as an organisation,” they said.
Hence, the people urged the firm to act on the agreement with Diebiri-Batan community in the areas of contract awards, especially, the on-going 13 wells dredging contracts as it has done with other communities also hosting the field.

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