Published On: Mon, Jun 3rd, 2019

Ijaw Community Demands For Appointment Of indigene As DESOPADEC Chairman

LAGOS JUNE 3RD (URHOBOTODAY)-The people of Ogulagha Kingdom in Burutu Local Government Area, Delta State has appealed to Delta State Governor, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa to appoint one of their indigene as Chairman or Managing Director of Delta state Oil Producing Areas Development Commission, DESOPADEC.
In an open letter to the governor by Concerned Ogulagha kingdom indigenes,signed by its Chairman , Mr Godfrey Tare Pondi, Comr. Doubra Okotete – Secretary (Secretary IYC, Western Zone) and eighty five others said as a major oil producing community it was high time the area got the position of the Chairman or Managing Director of the commission.
”Sir, the law setting up Desopadec is anchored on two critical pillars i.e oil producing areas and production quantum. You will agree with us that the Ogulagha kingdom people meet this criteria squarely.
“However, since the inception of the commission, we have been deprived the opportunity to produce either the Chairman or managing director inspite of the obvious fact that we are the second highest producer
“Your Excellency, inspite of this very privileged position that we occupy and the enormous support we availed your government through peaceful oil and gas production environment and the protection of critical oil and gas assets, the Ogulagha kingdom people have nothing to be proud of in terms of Desopadec appointments.
“It will interest you to know that the Ogulagha kingdom people host critical national oil and gas assets such as Forcados terminal, Forcados Yokiri integrated gas project, Yokiri Gaslight Station, Northbank, Southbank, Afremor A&B, Estuary, Yokiri, Beniniboye, Meji Flowstations, over 100 oil and gas wells operated peacefully by Shell, Agip, Chevron, Brittania-U etc.
“It will therefore not be too much to demand for the slot of Chairman or Managing Director of the Commission as critical stakeholders and at this time especially when our neighbours the itsekiris and urhobos have benefited the same positions,” the group said.
The group further rejected the position of Senior Political Adviser given to an Ijaw, Chief Solomon Funkekeme, saying it was not commensurate with the contributions of the Ijaw to the reelection of governor Okowa
“Another sad commentary is the perceived deliberate attempt to undermine the huge support of the ijaws in the just concluded general elections against all odds. It is disheartening to hear that the Ijaws were given a mere Senior Political Adviser portfolio at the wake of your political appointments; it is to say the least an insult to our collective sacrifice and is totally unacceptable.”, it said.
“We also want to register our displeasure at another deliberate attempt by your government to shortchange the Ijaw people in terms of the number of Commissioners to represent an ethnic Nationality in the amended law that guides the Commission. It is kunfortunate that Urhobos who by production quantum on which basis the Commission was founded produce three (3) Commissioners while the Ijaws with the highest production quantum are left to fight over one Commissioner Slot.
“We are hereby calling your Excellency to amend the law to either give the Ijaws more commissionership slots; hinged on the basis of production quantum or it should be reversed to as it were; when each ethnic nationality had a Commissioner to represent its interests.”, it added.

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