22 February 2016, Yenagoa—Twelve aggrieved oil producing communities in Bayelsa State have threatened to shut down operations of Shell Petroleum Development Company, SPDC, over the company’s handling of its relationship with the host communities.
In a communique after a meeting attended by all the Community Development Committee, CDC, Chairmen and other stakeholders of the EA field host communities, the communities accused SPDC of defaulting on the implementation of General Memorandum of Understanding, GMoU, entered into with the communities.
The host communities also threatened to stage a protest against the oil company, alleging that the company failed to sign surveillance contracts and reduce the contracts duration period from 12 months to nine.
The communique by Ebimobowei Deboh, Chairman, EA Host Communities Chairmen Forum, said: “SPDC should pay up all the GMOU fund, late and current tranches and also the defaulters’ fees with the peace bonus to all clusters in the EA field operations.
“Since the inception of the EA field, SPDC has refused to give opportunities to our contractors to participate in the main stream jobs under the spirit of local content, despite the numerous contracts that run the day to day activities in the EA field such as standby vessels, servicing/shuttling vessels, crew boats, take-off/mooring vessels, AGO supply, food/catering services, waste management, well-head maintenance and painting/ sand blasting.”
He described as unacceptable the refusal of the SPDC EA Department to pay the salaries of the community surveillance workers for September-December 2015.
Deboh added that SPDC was yet to come-up with a policy to employ any of their youth either as direct or contract staff to be part of the company’s Bayelsa State Liaison office in Yenagoa since the inception of its EA operation in their area.