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Kinsmen at war over oil bodies in Ondo

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Kinsmen at war over oil bodies in Ondo

Post  Admin on Wed Jul 31, 2013 8:57 pm

The people of the oil producing communities of Ondo have in the last few weeks been involved in several agitations over the constitution and control of oil related organisations in the state. The people mainly from Ilaje Local Government Area of the state, who have been living and co existing like brothers have however been at loggerheads as far as the control of oil matter is concerned in the state.

The agitation was said to have started from a directive by the major oil producing companies operating in the area, Chevron Nigeria Limited, that all oil associations in the coastal communities of Ilaje be merged and commence operations under one umbrella. The directive from the oil company was said to have come late last year with an April 2013 deadline stipulated for the activities.


Based on the letter from Chevron, the people of Ugboland, comprising six wards from constituency one of Ilaje Local Government commenced the move for the merging of the oil related associations in the area and consequently merged the associations to become the Ilaje Ugbo Coastal Communities Development Committee (IUCCDC).
The development however sparked of protest from various parts of the local government with associations from Ugbo in the fore front of the condemnation of the move. Major oil related associations from Ugboland protested to the state government and the oil company that they were not carried along in the merger processes.
But the most vociferous of the agitations against the merger done by the people of Ugbo came from the people of constituency two, which also has six wards and comprises of Mahin, Aheri and Etikan. The people claimed that the letter written by Chevron which directed that the merger should be done explicitly stated that all associations in Ilaje coastal communities should be merged for the purpose of recognition by the oil company.

The agitations by the people made the oil company to write to the state government to demand clarification on the merger done by the Ugbo people and communicated to the company. Consequently, the state government set up a technical committee to look into the issue with the hope of finding a solution to the crisis. The committee was still meeting and had yet to come up with its report before another round of agitations commenced from the communities.

Sensing that the committee might eventually accommodate the people of constituency two and make them eligible to benefit from oil related issues in the state, youths from Ugboland protested to the office of the governor and rejected any move that could merge them with the Mahin, Aheri and Etikan people. They claimed that they were not against the merger of the people of constituency two, but they should not be merged with them, arguing that Ugbo is the only oil producing area in Ilaje Local Government Area.

The protest by the Ugbo people also elicited reaction from the people of Mahin, Aheri and Etikan with youths of the three ethnic groups also marched to the governor’s office to protest against the stand of the Ugbo people over the matter.

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Re: Kinsmen at war over oil bodies in Ondo

Post  Admin on Wed Jul 31, 2013 8:57 pm

As the agitations continued, it became obvious that there were more to it than the arguments on the merger of oil associations in the area.

Observers were quick to notice that the people took the agitation thus far because of the membership and headship of oil related bodies which the state benefits from by virtue of being an oil producing state. Such bodies include the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), the Ondo State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission (OSOPADEC) and the Local Content Board (LCB).

The agitations took its present dimension because the tenure of the present board of NDDC will lapse on August 6, while the state governor, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko, is expected to constitute a new board for OSOPADEC. Apart from this, the post of the Executive Director, Project of NDDC was said to have been zoned to the state, hence the need for the various groups to attempt to outsmart one another in the scheming for such positions.
To the people of Mahin, Aheri and Etikan, the people of Ugboland had dominated the positions for so long, arguing that both OSOPADEC and NDDC had been occupied by people from Ugbo axis of the local government to the detriment of other areas.
According to a paper presented to the state governor during their protest and signed by Chief Olu Malumi, Chief Ebenezer Ogungbure, Chief Zeblon Orisamugbehin , the people said to ascertain the fact that the oil related bodies belong to all Ilaje coastal communities, the first commissioner that represented the state on the board of the Oil Mineral Producing Areas Development Commission (OMPADEC), Adebanjo Edema, is from Mahin and was later succeeded by Fola Iwatan from Ugbo axis.
The people added that upon the creation of NDDC and OSOPADEC, Chief Olusola Oke from Ugbo, was the commissioner representing the state on the board of the commission, while Ajose Kudehinbu, an Aheri man, was at the helms of affairs in OSOPADEC during the regime of the late Chief Adebayo Adefarati. They said the situation however changed during the regime of Dr. Olusegun Agagu, who gave the two posts to the people of Ugboland. While Oke was in NDDC, Dr. Idowu Omotehinse also from Ugbo was named the chairman of OSOPADEC.

The situation, according to the people of constituency two had remained same for over 10 years now.

However, the agitations for positions in oil related bodies in Ondo State appeared to be multifaceted. As there are inter-constituency agitations, there are also intra-constituency ones that are raging, particularly among the people of Ugboland.
Some communities, towns and wards in Ugbo land are also of the opinion that they had been dominated by other wards in the area. The people of ward five of the local government have appealed to the governor to correct the imbalance as it remained the only ward that has not benefited from appointments into either NDDC or OSOPADEC.

The argument of the people was that since the inception of OMPADEC, NDDC and OSOPADEC, nobody from the area has been appointed into such bodies despite their “incontrovertible position in oil production level” in the state. The ward has communities like Jinrinwo, Odo Nla, Ikorigho, Ajegunle and Ojumole, which have a major oil well on shore of the state.

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Re: Kinsmen at war over oil bodies in Ondo

Post  Admin on Wed Jul 31, 2013 8:57 pm

They argued that the present member of the Local Content Board, Abayomi Akinruntan, is from ward one, while the immediate past chairman of OSOPADEC hails from ward two, Olusola Oke and Adewale Omojuwa, who was also a chairman of OSOPADEC are from ward three. The immediate past commissioner in NDDC, Benson Enikuemehin, the incumbent Dele Omogbemi and Omotehinse are from ward four, while Iwatan, the present member representing Ilaje/Ese-Odo Federal constituency in the House of Representatives, Raphael Nomiye are from ward six, leaving ward five as the only one without any post.

Also in a position paper to the state government by the people of the area signed by Tunde Ikujuni, Nason Anthony, Monehin Yomi and Caleb Malumi, among others, the people said, “What is most disturbing is the manner in which these positions are being dominated by leading political players from Ugbo wards three and four without recourse to the fact that the geese which lay the most golden eggs should, by law of natural justice, fairness and equity deserve to eat the fattest bone. The political device our brothers from Ugbo three and four always adopt is to go to Akure and present themselves as Ugbo while internally dominating and short changing the actual communities that produce the oil in large quantity.”

To the people, the governor should look towards ward five for a young, dynamic and vibrant person for appointment into the board of the NDDC. According to the people of the area, ward five, could boast of illustrious sons and daughters that can successfully manage the post. To them, people like Ola Omotehinse, a prominent member of the Labour Party (LP) and a seasoned banker, who had contributed to the growth of the party, is fit for the job. However, as the expiration of the tenure of the present board of NDDC draws near, various interest groups and people were said to have been coming up to show interest in the plum job.

One of the leaders of the ward, Alfred Aganyebi, said the agitation of the people was borne out of the fact that as a ward that produces a large quantity of oil in the region, it should be considered for appointment into the commission.

He said, “The main purpose of our agitation is to respectfully appeal to Mr. Governor to apply his attribute of justice and fairness to the issue of appointing the next NDDC state representative. We should be treated equally like our brothers from other wards because out of the 12 oil-based appointments made so far in Ilaje constituency one, Ugbo ward five has none. This totally negates the principle of equity and fairness and we hope it will be promptly corrected before the next appointment is made”.
Among those said to be interested in the post are the incumbent, Omogbemi, who is completing the tenure of the last board that was dissolved before the tenure of the members lapsed due to the crisis of confidence between the then chairman and Managing Director of the commission. Apart from Omogbemi, the immediate past commissioner, Enikuemehin is also said to have shown interest in the post, while the people of ward five are pushing for Omotehinse.

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Re: Kinsmen at war over oil bodies in Ondo

Post  Admin on Wed Jul 31, 2013 8:58 pm

http://www.aboutondostate.com/2013/07/kinsmen-at-war-over-oil-bodies-in-ondo.html

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Re: Kinsmen at war over oil bodies in Ondo

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