–By Michael EKOKORUWE
Leaders of Isoko extraction, Isoko traditional ruler’s council, president -generals and chairmen of OML 30 cluster groups from Isoko communities, have demanded for a new General Memorandum of Understanding (GMOU) between Heritage Energy Operational Limited and host communities of Isoko Nation for Isoko oil mining lease (OML)30 community development board.
The hint was made during a meeting between the representatives of the oil firm and Isoko leaders, the royal majesties, president – generals and chairmen of cluster groups from Isoko communities in the OML 30 community development board.
The chairmen of Isoko South and North, Sir Itiako Ikpokpo and Hon. Emmanuel Egbabor who conveyed the meeting stated that the stakeholders meeting is for the welfare and stake of Isoko people in OML 30 board. Sir Ikpokpo urged Heritage Energy operational limited to harmonize and prioritize payments of staffs salaries, contractors and employment slots for Isoko indigenes, adding that president general of host communities should be well informed of such payments. He appealed to the oil firm for transparency and details of activities.
Speaking at the stakeholders meeting HRM Okpuzo Inana, the Odiologbo of Owhe kingdom said, the tenure of the OML 30 community development board has expired since 5th of February 2018. The monarch noted that Heritage energy operational services should have issued a template containing the directive for a new GMOU. He emphasized that Isoko people need their own OML 30 community development board.
The monarch maintained that, with the new GMOU and community development board for Isoko Nation, Heritage Energy operational limited will operate peacefully with the host communities and eventually produce more barrels of oil. He added that contractors will be happy to work just as the operations will be beneficial to all and more revenue will go to the state government through pay as you earn policy.
Earlier, the president – generals from various Isoko communities decried non – employment of indigenes, contractors owing between 7 to 8 months of staffs salaries and a general distrust between the oil firm and host communities.
While responding, the representatives of Heritage energy operational limited said, two sons of Isoko have been given management employment slots. They are Mr. Ake Okpako Michael from Emevor in charge of operation and Humphrey Mazoje from Owhe as manager and adviser in charge of field human resource, both from Isoko North local government area.
The oil firm representative agreed on further deliberations on a later date with the royal majesties, president generals and chairmen of cluster groups for a better understanding of the new GMOU and Isoko OML 30 community development board process. Heritage assured of harmonizing all issues for peaceful community relations in the area of operation.
In attendance are the security agencies, the Nigeria Army and the police. Chief Iduh Amadhe, president general Isoko Development Union, Isoko traditional ruler’s council, president – generals and chairmen of OML 30 cluster group from various Isoko communities, Umuakpo Ovie, president Isoko National Youth Assembly and representatives of Heritage energy operational limited.