(2nd Right) NLNG MD, Tony Attah and NLNG DMD, Sadeeq Mai-Bornu, give a model of an NLNG ship to the Amanyanabo of Bonny Kingdom, His Majesty, King Edward Asimini William Dappa Pepple III, Perekule XI. With them are Chairman, Bonny Chiefs’ Council, Ambassador Claude Wilcox, Chief Abel Attoni and NNPCChief Operating Officer,Gas & Power, Yusuf Usman.
From Blessing Ibunge, Port Harcourt
Unlike some oil and gas giants operating in the Niger Delta region, the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Limited has proved to be community friendly in 20 years of operating in Bonny Island, one of the Local Government Areas of Rivers State.
In as much as there has been call by host communities of multinationals in the region to stop some multinationals from operating in their areas following complains of marginalisation and neglect, the management of NLNG has continue to promote local content, which is a sure way of human empowerment and community development, thereby reducing challenges of restiveness.
About a week ago, Nigeria NLG celebrated its 30 years of existence as a corporate entity and 20 years of safe and steady operation amidst joy by host communities. The celebration which attracted prominent personalities across the country, held peacefully without interruption or agitation from any group whatsoever.
Pollution is the major reason communities would not smile at some multinationals, but Nigeria LNG has continue to manage the flares emitted from its gas operation, rather they diversify the economy and minimise the environmental impact of their activities and products.
The AUTHORITY visit to facilities of the oil and gas giant in Bonny Island discovered reason the host communities respected their relationship with the global LNG company. Coming from the State Capital in Port Harcourt, were soot pollution is sending so many people to their early grave, the serene and clean Bonny environment shows how much values NLNG have for the people.
Beyond its cordial relationship with its primary host community, Bonny Kingdom, NLNG also extends same relationship to the contiguous pipeline communities. The company has also supported the improvement of infrastructure, health and educational facilities and encourages local enterprise, facilitating knowhow and building capacity in the sustainable use of resources in its host communities.
Due to the peaceful operational environment, the Nigeria LNG which began its business in May 1989, and loaded its first LNG cargo from its then two-train LNG facility in October 1999, indicating the beginning of one of Nigeria’s best business investment success stories, has so far delivered 4, 700 cargoes to various destinations around the world.
The Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Limited, Mr Tony Attah had noted that the cordial relationship between the community and the company in the past 20 years has led to the enviable environment and human development experienced in the area.
Mr Attah stated at the ground breaking ceremony for the Bonny Consulate Building in commemoration of 30 years anniversary of incorporation, 20 years of safe and reliable production and delivery of LNG from its six-train plant on Bonny Island and 15 years of sponsoring the Nigeria.
The NLNG boss added that the company will continue to deliver its Corporate Social Responsibility until Bonny Island is transformed to Dubai in Nigeria.
He said “Today will go down in history as yet another occasion in which Nigeria LNG expanded its imprints in the development of Bonny Island. I am very particularly elated about this event because it reinforces Nigeria LNG’s resolve to change the narrative about our host community, Bonny Island.
“This community is home to notable oil and gas giants in Nigeria. It is therefore only expected that Bonny should command significant recognition as a preferred investors and tourists’ destination. This is more so given the fact that it is one of the most developed communities in the Niger Delta with a modern road network, potable water and perhaps the only community in Nigeria with 99% electric power availability.
“All of these have been enabled by the cordial relationship that has existed between this peaceful community and Nigeria LNG in the last 20 years, upon which we synergized with our joint industry peers on the Island to provide basic social amenities to progress facilitate the development of a modern Bonny Society.
“Driving this aspiration further, Nigeria LNG is pursuant of a Bonny community that will likened to Dubai in terms of tourism and economic activities. This is our true dream for the community and we are resolute on achieving it, riding on the Bonny Kingdom master plan which is built around four pillars; Human Capital Development, Economic expansion and diversification, Infrastructure Development and Environmental sustainability”.
Declaring some of the company’s propose achievements in the community, Mr Attah said “Already, we have launched the Bonny Community Health Insurance Programme in conjunction with Rivers State Government. It is an initiative that is designed to provide affordable health for the people of the community. This is in addition to our malaria eradication programme which aims at creating a vibrant society of healthy people.
“Following that quickly, is the ongoing Bonny – Bodo Road construction which we are co-sponsoring with the Federal Government. This is expected to be completed within the next 48 months. We are confident that this road will trigger the development of more commercial ventures and attract other positive interests such as tourism.
“With a functional Airstrip in Bonny which has capacity to land an air craft of about 60 seats or more as currently deployed by the private users, the outlook of Bonny community is one that promises to be the envy of most other coastal communities in the Niger Delta region”.
He added that the ground breaking ceremony for the reconstruction of the Bonny Consulate Building is an assurance of how much NLNG wants to realize the advancement of the community that has been home to them.
“I believe you can appreciate that our interest in this community is much more than our economic gain; it is also about working with you to recreate the heroic picture of the ancient Bonny kingdom, to situate the community in its place of pride as a key business hub and especially to make sure that we make Bonny better than we met it 20 years ago”.
In his remark at the event, Amanyanabo of Bonny, King Edward Asimini William-Dappa Pepple, noted that Bonny community is exceptionally blest with natural endowments that have pulled varied economic interests to the kingdom since the 15th century.
The King thanked management of NLNG for reawaken the Consulate building which dream was abandoned many years ago.
“So we are really happy with what is happening here today, as we witness the benevolent gesture by this outstanding corporate citizen of Bonny community, Nigeria LNG kick-starting the actualisation of this mutual aspiration by re-enacting the Bonny Consulate Building.
“This building as the name suggests, is quite significant in the development trails of Bonny Kingdom. The consulate is reminiscent of the active involvement of the British in the internal affairs of the kingdom in the 19th century. This was largely occasioned by their intense interest in the favourable business clime they found with us here. The story has been the same ever since and Bonny continues to provide that ambience that every business concern, especially of export nature requires.
“The story about the Bonny Consulate Building was a fading reality about which people can only read distorted recounts in different publications. As Nigeria LNG bequeaths the kingdom this building in replication of that vestige consulate building, Bonny Kingdom will again be able to proudly keep the memoirs of its ancient business history. This is a huge gift from Nigeria LNG to Bonny Kingdom.
“We assure you that when this building is completed and furnished to be fit for purpose, the Kingdom will take on the responsibility of utilizing it such that Nigeria LNG Limited will be proud you committed to this project and posterity will remember you”.