Bayelsa State government charges NCDMB on local content act.

Bayelsa State Government has called on the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) to give its hosts and other oil bearing communities a sense of belonging in the implementation of its programmes and projects.

The state Deputy Governor, Senator Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, made the call at a meeting with the paramount ruler, chiefs and other stakeholders of Elebele Community in Ogbia Local Government Area, at his office in Government House, Yenagoa.

Senator Ewhrudjakpo advised the NCDMB management board to be exemplary in its conduct and be properly guided by the local content Act in the areas of employment and corporate social responsibility.

He said a situation where the corporate institutions turn a deaf ear to genuine complaints from their host communities would not promote cordial industrial relations but rather engender the already existing feeling of exclusion and disenchantment in the people.

While thanking the Elebele community for their maturity and peaceful disposition, Senator Ewhrudjakpo said efforts were being made by NCDMB to extend power supply from its gas plant to Elebele.

The Deputy Governor stressed the need for other communities to emulate Elebele in the pursuit of their interests by engaging in meaningful dialogue and not to violate the rights of other people on the altar of protest.

Responding to the issue of the Bayelsa State Polytechnic, Aleibiri, currently operating from Elebele, Senator Ewhrudjakpo directed the Commissioner for Education, Dr. Gentle Emelah to redesign the signboard of the institution to reflect Elebele as its temporary site.

He also promised that government would look into the issue of compensation for the various portions of land acquired from the community for the Nigerian Army 16 Brigade and the ongoing AIT-Elebele-Igbogene Ring Road projects.

On the complaints concerning the state-owned Bayelsa Palm, Senator Ewhrudjakpo also directed the Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources, Mr. David Alagoa to convene a meeting between Elebele community and company to report back in three weeks.

Speaking earlier, the Paramount Ruler of Elebele Community, Chief David Osene, alleged that the NCDMB had denied his community of employment opportunities and other benefits including electricity from its gas power plant.

Chief Osene who also decried what he described as hostile attitude of AMMANCO Limited in charge of the Bayelsa Palm Estate, pleaded with the State Government to take steps to stop the unnecessary harassment of his people by the company.

He also pleaded with government to ensure the employment of Elebele indigenes at the Bayelsa State Polytechnic, Aleibiri, and the reflection of Elebele on the school’s signboard at its temporary site.