The Rivers State Governor Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has supported not less than 10 percent fund quota to host communities in the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) that is still before the National Assembly.
Governor Wike stated that it is also obligatory that the Bill state in clear terms knows what particular development to use the allocated fund for. To make sure that the development of host communities can be truly actualized.
He also gave the charge when the members of the National Assembly Committee on the Petroleum Industry Bill, visited him at the Government House in Port Harcourt on Tuesday.
He added that oil-bearing communities have suffered the loss of their livelihood, good drinking water, their socio-cultural life distorted because of the insensitivity of the International Oil Companies(IOCs). ” It is unfortunate that people produce oil but live in poverty. I believe that this Petroleum Industry Bill committee will make recommendations of how certain percent must be given to the host oil communities”.
”There are issues of education and health. Don’t just say 10 percent to the oil host communities, It must be tied to specific projects so that the whoever is in charge will know it too.
So that he/she does not have the prerogative to initiate, like during Christmas, to buy and give 20 thousand bags of rice and take it as a project. ‘Let it also not be that the host community people will have this money and you begin to see assassinations among themselves’.
He also said ‘ I have found out that part of the problem we have in communities is that they allow these oil companies to divide them. They cause crisis amongst themselves. This is the pattern of the IOCs ,particularly Shell’.