11 September 2015, Abuja – STAR Deepwater Petroleum Limited and its co-venturers in the Agbami field have announced their plans to increase their investments in the agricultural and educational sector and also boost the capacities and capabilities of Nigerians in the oil and gas sector. Speaking during the handover of a science laboratory to Benue State and the official launch of the Agro-Economic Empowerment Programme in Katsina State, Mr. Jeffrey Ewing, Director, Deepwater and Production Sharing Contracts, stated that the investments are aimed towards developing the Nigerian economy.
Ewing, who was represented by Mr. Sam Otuonye, Manager, Policy, Government and Public Affairs, Chevron Nigeria Limited, stated that the commitment of Star Deepwater and its co-venturers in the Agbami field the development of Nigerian capacities and capabilities in the oil and gas industry was geared towards ensuring maximum positive impact on the economy.
“These deliberate efforts have resulted in employment generation, higher local contractors’ participation in the design and fabrication of facilities for the project and training,” he explained.
He stated that the Agro-based Economic Empowerment Development Project, which involved the provision of storage and Vegetable Preservation Processing Centre at Ajiwa community in Batagarawa Local Government, was designed to enhance the capacity of farmers and boost agriculture in Katsina state.
He disclosed that the project has started yielding the desired results, as it has helped farmers within the community and other nearby communities to improve their capacities on modern irrigation techniques and business skills for entrepreneurial development.
He further stated that the science laboratory which was donated to Government College, Makurdi, Benue State, would help bring about an increase in knowledge in the areas of physics, biology and chemistry.
Ewing noted that the laboratories are fully equipped with modern apparatus and reagents to ensure it is conducive for teaching and learning, while he commended the government and people of Benue State for their collaboration in ensuring the success of the project.
Continuing, he said, “Apart from the science laboratories we are handing over, several projects by the co-venturers are either on-going or completed across the country. The projects, mainly chest clinics, libraries and science laboratories constitute an aspect of the strategic interventions by the Agbami co-venturers.
‘It would interest you to know that we have built and donated 24 fully equipped, modern science laboratory complexes and also trained laboratory technologists and science teachers to run these facilities. We have also built and donated 24 chest clinics to different states, while over 12,000 Nigerians are currently beneficiaries of our scholarship programmes.”
*Michael Eboh – Vanguard