Delta governor wants Shell back in Warri

We’ve disbursed N835m to 600 entrepreneurship, other groups — Okowa
United Bank for Africa

The Delta Government has appealed to the Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) to once more resume full operations in Warri.

Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa, made the appeal on Thursday at the inauguration of the N123 million Ugborodo Ultra-modern Town Hall donated by SPDC Joint Venture.

Our correspondent reports that Ugborodo community is host to many oil multinationals, including SPDC and Chevron Nigeria Ltd.

The governor, represented by the Commissioner for Oil and Gas, Mr Mofe Pirah, said the government would continue to provide conducive business environment for the private sector to operate.

Okowa said his administration would continue to upgrade infrastructure in Warri and environs.

He appealed to other industries that left Warri to return.

Okowa expressed the hope that with the proposed dredging of Escravos River by the Federal Government, more businesses would return to Warri, the industrial hub of the state.

“I appeal to the industries that moved out of Warri during crisis to come back, Warri is ranked among the most peaceful cities in the country.

“I want to also plead with Shell to return with the full complement of its western operations.

“The government will continue to provide conducive environment for the private sector to operate, that is why we keep our doors open to receive genuine suggestions and partnership in every area of human endeavours,’’ he said.

Okowa, who described the town hall as a good example of Corporate Social Responsibility, added that it was a way of building bridges of confidence and trust between SPDC and the people.

He appealed to Ugborodo people to use the facility responsibly.

Earlier, the Olu of Warri, Ogiame Ikenwoli, advised the people, particularly the youth, against obstructing development projects in the community.

“I thank the community for creating the enabling environment for this project to succeed. Youths are supposed to be agents of development, so, you should support Shell to attract more development,’’ he said.

Mr Igo Weli, the General Manager, External Relations of SPDC, said the 500-capacity ultra-modern town hall also had five offices, meeting room for 18 persons, one ICT room, a store and conveniences.

He said the project was chosen by the Ugborodo community as priority need and was directly supervised by Ugborodo Project Community Trust under a Project Management Committee arrangement.

“I appeal to the community to support the Ugborodo Project Community Trust to ensure maintenance of the hall.

“It is our hope that Ugborodo and other host communities would work towards the successful establishment of a functional Global Memorandum of Understanding (GMoU) in this area,’’ he said.

Mr Victor Omunu, President, Ugborodo Community, represented by the Financial Secretary, Mr Christian Akpeyi, thanked Shell for building the hall and promised to make good use of it.

It was reported that after divesting most of its facilities in Delta to some indigenous oil companies, SPDC still operates the Forcados Export Terminal and one other platform in the state.