Delta govt brokers peace on 3-decade old dispute between oil coy & host community
By Nosa Akenzua, Asaba
Delta State government has brokered peace on the thirty three years old dispute between Umusadegbe- Ogbe community and Midwestern Oil and Gas in Ndokwa West Local Government Area of the state.
Rising from a four hour meeting on Monday, the state governor, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa, represented by the state Commissioner for Oil and Gas, Mr Emmanuel Amadugba, said that the meeting attended by representatives of the community and Midwestern Oil and Gas Company, explained that the state government was committed to the sustenance of peace across the state with a view to creating an enabling environment for investors, adding that the dispute was informed by conflicting information from both parties.
The commissioner, however, appealed to the management of Midwestern Oil and Gas Company to do everything possible to pacify the community as they were aggrieved over the death of their sons.
It would be recalled that two sons of the community were allegedly murdered by unknown gunmen during the crisis.
It was gathered that the Midwestern Oil and Gas Company allegedly flouted its agreement with the community in regard to employment as it only employed two of its sons that were allegedly murdered in cold blood during their protest to the company.
But spokes persons of Umusadege-Ogbe community, Chief Godwim Onwuse and Chief Dennis Okoh listed the community’s demands to include benefitting burial ceremonies for the deceased and scholarships for their children. Others, according to them were economic empowerment for the widows of the deceased, employment of two of the community youths to replace the dead ones and the building of a two bedroom house for the family of the deceased.
Responding to the demands, the Chief Executive Officer of Midwestern Oil and Gas Company, Engr Charles Odita, apologised to the community for not being able to attend to previous peace meetings, attributing it to flight cancellation. He promised on behalf of the company to give N3 million to anyone with useful information that would lead to the arrest of those behind the murder.
In his remarks, the member representing Ndokwa West Constituency at the Delta State House of Assembly, Hon. Charles Emetulu, and the Commissioner for Youth Development, Mr Ifeanyi Egwunyenga, however, appealed to the management of the Midwestern Oil and Gas Company to do everything possible in its power to meet the demands of the community because of the mysterious circumstances surrounding the death of the youths