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Ondo lawmakers ask Chevron to clean up communities affected by oil well inferno

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The ad hoc committee set up by the Ondo State House of Assembly to investigate the inferno at Ojumole Oil field has directed Chevron Nigeria Limited to clean up the affected communities.

Newsmen report that the Assembly’s directive is expected to be carried out by the oil company in line with environmental safety regulations.

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The ad hoc committee on Ojumole fire incident met with the critical stakeholders including Chevron top officials and representatives of the affected communities at the Speaker’s conference room in Akure on Wednesday.

Mr Benjamin Jaiyeola, Secretary of the ad hoc committee, briefed newsmen on the development after several hours of deliberations, which was also attended by the Speaker, Bamidele Oloyelogun.

Jaiyeola said that the ongoing interface between the people and Chevron should be strictly monitored to ensure that all the affected communities are reached in no distant time.

He said that the meeting also resolved that efforts should be geared up to put in place a permanent health facility in the affected communities and that Chevron should create jobs for the youths in the oil-producing communities.

The meeting also resolved that the ad hoc committee must be notified and properly informed on all major activities carried out in these communities and Chevron should create an administrative office in Ilaje Local Government Area as soon as possible.

It was also resolved that Chevron should liaise with the state board of internal revenue on the issue of arrears of taxes owed by the company and quickly report back to the committee within the next one month.

The committee urged the chairman of the affected communities to relate with the lawmakers through their secretary concerning developments on the issue.

The ad hoc committee chairman of the Ojumole Oil Well incident, Mr Abayomi Akinruntan, lauded Chevron Nigeria Limited for its cooperation so far since the inception of the public hearing on the incident.

Akinruntan lauded the company for its prompt response in putting out the fire by using modern technology and urged Chevron to do more to impact the lives of the affected communities.

Newsmen recall that the House had set up a six-man ad hoc committee on May 7 during its plenary with Abayomi Akinruntan, representing Ilaje constituency 1 in the Assembly as the chairman.

NAN reports that the fire incident occurred on April 18 at Ugbo llaje Ojumole oil well in Ilaje Local Government Area of the state.

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SOURCE: PUNCH

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