*seek immediate award of scholarships, employment for 500 indigenes, Others
By Appolos Christian
A coalition of militants under the eagis of Niger Delta Volunteers (NDV) has demanded for immediate removal of the Managing Director of the Universal Energy Resources Limited, Mr. Bassey Umoh by the company management to avoid incurring Ita wrath.
The militants said that their call Umoh’s removal was in protest against his actions which has resulted to the non-implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding earlier signed with the host Community.
The group also stated that the MD is using his position to victimize the indigenes of Unyenge community which is the host community of the oil company.
They also alleged that Umoh who hails from Akwa Ibom has never visited to the community, instead he is plotting the removal of the present Secretary to the State Government, Dr. Emmanuel Ekuwem who is an indigene of the host community for mounting pressure on the company to implement the MoU.
The NDV in a statement jointly signed by Misters Ekpo Ekpo, Nsidibe Etim, Patrick Itrechio, Etetim Okung, Ichoho Ichoho, Okon Edemekong, Antigha Okokon and Aniekeme Nssien demanded immediate award of scholarship to 500 University and postgraduate students of the state among others within 14 days.
They threatened to attack the flow station which is the company’s major pipeline that runs through to Ibeno terminal, as well as other facilities and offices should Universal Energy Resources limited refuse to heed their demands.
The statement read in full: “Rising from a joint meeting with the Coalition of Niger Delta Militants, the Niger Delta Volunteers, have demanded for the immediate removal of the Managing Director of the Universal Energy Resources Limited, Mr. Bassey Umoh for his uncompromising stance which has culminated in the non-implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding earlier signed with the Community.
“He also uses his position to victimize and oppose indigenes of Unyenge (Host) community who struggle to ensure that their rights and privileges are restored.
“The M.D as an indigene of the State has never visited the host communities, nether has he met with the communities nor addressed the various grievances of the communities concerning the attitude of the company.
“For a company that the State government holds majority shares, it leaves much to be desired to witness the level of maltreatment and discrimination meted out to indigenes of Akwa Ibom State.
“The Company’s attitude is to sabotage to current peace efforts initiated and sustained by the Federal Government since 2009. The company though the Managing Director is seemingly working against the State Government which is the highest stakeholder in the company.
“We have also uncovered a plot by the top directors of the company in connivance with some top government associates, to frame up and call for the removal of the present Secretary to the State Government, Dr. Emmanuel Ekuwem who is an indigene of the host community as a result of the pressure he has been mounting, calling for the full implementation of the MOU.
“We also demand the implementation of the following demands:
” Award of at least five hundred (500) post-secondary scholarships, sixty (60) post graduate scholarships in any Nigerian institution of Higher learning, to indigenes of the host communities and the rest of Akwa Ibom State.
“Provision of infrastructural development as well as micro credit schemes and skill development programs, annually.
*”At least 60% of the total workforce in Universal Energy Resources Ltd shall be drawn from the Host communities and the State, while the company should appoint an indigene of Unyenge community to the position of a director in the company.
*”Sixty Percent (60%) of the total Contracts/Supplies should be given to the community Contractors / Suppliers.
Provision of functional health facilities and institutions of learning in the communities as a matter of urgency.
“Failure to commence the implementation of these demands within 14 days, we shall be left with no other option than to commence a well-coordinated attack that will aim at destroying all flow stations, the company’s major pipeline (23km) that runs through to Ibeno terminal, as well as other company facilities and offices. We are back to full surveillance and can no longer guarantee your safety and that of your beloved families.”