Senate has ordered international oil companies, IOCs to relocate their corporate headquarters from Abuja and Lagos back to their former base in the Niger Delta region without further delay.
Chairman, Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions, Senator Ayo Akinyelure (PDP Ondo Central), gave the order on Tuesday during a meeting with a group under the aegis of Peace Development, Security and Humanitarian Rights Association of Niger Delta,
According to him, “All the international oil companies must relocate their headquarters to the area where they operate so that the state governments can get their tax to improve their internally generate revenue, IGR.
“So that people will get employment because the power houses are currently relocated to Lagos. We are aware that their headquarters are either moved to Lagos or Abuja.
“The people in the Niger Delta want you to relocate to Niger Delta so that their state governments can collect their tax for the development of their states. The people of Niger Delta wants you back to the region.”
He urged the multinational oil companies to read and apply their local content laws on the employment scheme saying” Read your local content laws and let apply to Nigerians in the Niger Delta region.”
In his contribution, Senator James Manager (PDP Delta South), noted that “most of the headquarters of the international oil companies are located outside the Niger Delta areas”, saying the people of the region were not happy about the development.
“I hope and pray that it wouldn’t degenerate into something else subsequently. I don’t know if representatives of the IOCs here are competent speak on this on behalf of their headquarters because the Niger Deltans as far as we are concerned that in so doing that we can never be tolerated any longer.
“We are aware that it was the unrest in the Niger Delta that forced them out of the region to relocate to somewhere else but there is peace in the region as we speak. Niger Delta is not like the North East, peace has since returned to region. So, why are you still outside the Niger Delta. We can no longer tolerate that, you need to relocate to Niger Delta.”
Earlier in his submission, Secretary General of the group, Comrade Lucky Ovigue Ohwahwa, had listed among other issues, the inclusion of indigenes in the employment scheme of the IOCs, provision of electricity, establishment of youth/women acquisition, training and employment centers in every oil and gas producing local government areas and other basic social amenities to the host communities in the Niger Delta region.
It would be recalled that the IOCs were forced to relocate their corporate headquarters from Niger Delta region to Lagos and Abuja respectively because of kidnapping and other forms of youth restiveness in the region a couple of years ago.
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