Alabere worried that over 80% of oil blocks located in the region were given to individuals who were not from the Niger Delta area, stating that the region should be given more chances to operate the modular refinery to enhance development in the region.
From Paul Obiajunwo, Port Harcourt
OKIRIKA Communities in Okirika Local Government Area of Rivers State have demanded license from the Federal Government to operate a modular refinery.
The community pressed this demand on Thursday during a sensitisation programme titled: ‘End the Sabotage, Save the Future.
Speaking at the sensitisation, a member of the council of chiefs of Okirika, Chief Tamuno Akaluogba, who represented the Chairman of the chief’s council, Chief Amiesimaka Kala-Owolo, and the leader of Niger Delta Vigilante, High Chief Ateke Tom, noted that the community was ready to commence operation if the FG gives it the opportunity.
Akaluogbo stated, “The people of Okirika should request for the license to operate our own modular refinery first from the federal government before other people start because we have suffered so much from oil impact.
“We have all it takes to build our own modular refinery. The Federal Government should approve it for the people of Okirika. Our chiefs, including Chief Ateke hate oil theft and illegal refining.”
Akaluogbo regretted that the activities of illegal oil refiners were affecting the communities of Okirika, adding that there was need for full implementation of the modular refining.
He urged the Federal government to advise security agencies in the state to return every stolen crude petroleum product recovered from oil thieves for proper refining at the refinery other than wasting it and causing harm to the environment.
“The federal government should tell the security operatives to always return stolen products stolen to the refinery for refining. They should stop wasting it into the environment because they are causing harm to us,” Akaluogbo pleaded.
Meanwhile, the Caretaker Committee Chairman of Okirika LGA, Mr. Wilson Alabere, urged the FG to give more chances to the people of Niger Delta region to operate the modular refineries.