Port Harcourt — The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and the Presidential Amnesty Programme, have agreed to collaborate against pipeline vandalism, unemployment and other challenges in the oil rich Niger Delta region.
The agreement was reached when PAP’s Interim Administrator, Col. Milland Dixon Dikio (rtd) visited the Group Managing Director of NNPC, Mr Mele Kyari in Abuja.
The Amnesty boss explained that the visit was imperative, as PAP was courting willing partners to have a robust synergy to drive the Niger Delta Recovery Plan to fruition.
Dikio said that there was a need to control disruptions in oil production, saying destructive energies among youths could be channelled into productive ventures through re-orientation and sustained advocacy.
Dikio in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media, Neotaobase Egbe, said the meeting was strategic and in line with the objective of PAP to partner with all relevant stakeholders for the full implementation of the amnesty programme.
He disclosed that though PAP was executing its own role in reintegrating 30,000 ex-agitators captured by the Presidency, there was a need to strengthen partnership between sister agencies of the government for the sustainable development of the Niger Delta.
Responding, the NNPC GMD, Mele Kyari, commended Dikio for the efforts to ensure peace in the Niger Delta and emphasized the need to sustain the peace through accommodation and inclusiveness of Niger Delta youths.
Kyari regretted the inability of the oil industry to fulfill its obligations to the region over the years, saying that it was one of the reasons the amnesty programme had prolonged.
He said: “As we speak today, we have seen a number of increasing incidents of unrest; cases that remind us of the past we don’t want to recollect again.
“Therefore, everything you have said points to the fact that inclusion, support and empowerment for young people particularly in the Niger-Delta will bring peace and development to the Niger-Delta. No amount of resources available to you will give you peace except there is alignment with the respective players in the space.”
Kyari said the award of licences to investors to begin production on about 57 marginal oil fields within Niger Delta in 2022 was designed to support businesses from the region because most of the beneficiaries from the marginal field programme were indigenes of the Niger Delta.
He said NNPC working together with PAP would bring lasting peace to the region explaining that the number of experienced technical people produced from the programme, would easily fill employment opportunities.