By Ejiofor Alike
Bayelsa-based Niger Delta Indigenous Movement for Radical Change (NDIMRC) has handed down a 21-day ultimatum to the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to ensure the signing of the Final Investment Decision (FID) for the Brass Liquefied Natural Gas project located in Brass Island of Bayelsa State.
The group in a weekend statement signed by its President, Nelly Emma; Secretary, John Sailor and Public Relations Officer, Mukoro Stanley, expressed worry over the delay in the take-off of the project and also urged President Goodluck Jonathan to act fast and ensure that the NNPC mobilises the other shareholders for the FID.
The group noted that the signing of the FID would boost the success of the Federal Government’s amnesty programme.
NDMIRC gave 21-day ultimatum within which the NNPC should provide a time-table for the kick-off of the project or they “will mobilise and shut down all on-going gas projects in Niger Delta region.”
According to the group, a successful kick-off of the Brass LNG project would create jobs for Nigerians and reduce growing tension in the oil-rich region.
The group said if the success of the Amnesty Programme must be sustained, there should be no further delay in the execution of the Brass LNG project.
NDMIRC said it would oppose any attempt to pipe gas from the Niger Delta for LNG projects in other areas, without the actualisation of the Brass LNG project.
“We are not comfortable with the delay in the execution of the much talked about Brass LNG project. We want to say that delay is dangerous. The Brass LNG project is capable of generating jobs for restive youth in the Niger Delta region and will also lead to the rapid development of the region; hence we urge President Jonathan not to waste further time to jump-start the project.
“We are more worried in the sense that many of our ex-militants now undergoing various trainings in different parts of the world may not get a place to work at the end of their training.”
NDMIRC called on the Federal Government and the NNPC to expedite action of the project so that ex-militants would not go back to the creeks at the end of their successful training abroad, adding that the project is capable of taking many of the youth off the streets.
It noted that the execution of the Brass LNG project would bring the needed peace and development in the Niger Delta and urged the stakeholders to ensure that all issues delaying its take-off are resolved as soon as possible.
NDMIRC stated that the final success of the amnesty programme depended largely on the take-off of the Brass LNG project.
“The Federal Government should not waste the huge investment in the training of ex-militants without providing them jobs in a place like the Brass LNG project and we implore the President to make the Brass LNG project his top priority and anybody standing on its way should be fired. The transformation agenda of President Jonathan is incomplete without the Brass LNG. Our indigenous firms have also built capacity over the years to take on the Brass LNG project. We therefore call for a quick take-off of the Brass LNG project for the betterment of all Nigerians,” the group said.