Chevron Nigeria Limited (CNL) on Friday reiterated its belief and support for the community-driven development model it adopted some 19 years ago, saying it has fast tracked development in its host communities.
Mr Esimaje Brikinn, CNL’s General Manager, Policy, Government and Public Affairs, said this at the 9th Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Dodo River Communities Development Association (DRCDA).
The AGM, an integral component of the Global Memorandum of Understanding (GMoU) for delivering CNL’s social obligations to its hosts was held at the Dodo River Secretariat, in Yenagoa Bayelsa State.
The DRCDA is a community-based organisation established under the GMoU between the Dodo River Communities, the Bayelsa State Government and the CNL.
Esimaje, who was represented by Elijah Bikikoro, Community Engagement Coordinator, CNL in Bayelsa, congratulated the DRCDA on the AGM.
“The achievements of the DRCDA reinforce our belief that a process that is community-driven with an effective governance structure can stimulate quicker community development than processes and systems designed without effective participation of community members,” he said.
Mr Francis Amamogiran, Chairman DRCDA noted that the hallmark of the GMoU lies in the participation of the beneficiaries in the development process in an open and transparent manner from planning to execution of prioritised projects.
“The AGM is in keeping with the Transparency and Accountability principle embedded in the GMoU. It is an opportunity for the RDC to open its books for the relevant stakeholders to be abreast of its activities and accomplishments,”
Amamogiran, who thanked NNPC/CNL Joint Venture for consistently funding the Association, called on the Government to be more actively involved in community development.
“We equally call on Government at all levels, to be fully involved to encourage, guide, monitor and provide every necessary support in the process of community decision making, projects planning and implementation,” he said.
The audited accounts of the association indicated that DRCDA got a total of N95.43 million for 2020 fiscal year which is slightly higher than the N93.46 million received for the year 2019.
According to the audited accounts, the fund was used for infrastructure projects, scholarships and administration of the Dodo River Secretariat among others.
Also speaking, Dr Ebieri Jones, the Commissioner, Bayelsa State Ministry of Mineral Resources commended the NNPC/CNL Joint Venture for its steadfastness in funding the Dodo RCDA to ensure development in the communities.
He expressed delight that CNL remained committed to its funding obligations in spite of the tough business climate for the oil and gas industry.
The Commissioner, who was represented by Mrs. Hannah Amasuomo, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry commended the Dodo Communities for their peaceful disposition.
She encouraged them to maintain the peaceful environment required for business operations
Traditional rulers, government functionaries, community representatives, community development focused Non-Governmental Organisations and officials of Chevron attended the event.