Blessing Ibunge in Port Harcourt
The federal government has solicited the support of all stakeholders, including the oil and gas sectors, host communities and the civil society organisations in finding the lasting solution to the dilapidation of critical infrastructure in the country.
Minister for environment, Mohammed Abdullahi who spoke at a-two-day Niger Delta Infrastructure Security Summit, organised by the Nigeria Infrastructure and Business Assets Security Group held in Port Harcourt, Rivers State capital, said ensuring safety and workable infrastructure would enhance economic growth and development.
Represented by an Executive Officer at Federal Ministry for Environment, Alhaji Mohammed Ali, Abdullahi stressed that Nigeria as major oil producing nation had made huge investment in critical infrastructure in oil and gas industry ranging from exploration, to transport, pipelines among others.
He said the industry had seemingly been challenged by air and water pollution, limitation of land contamination as well as climate changes, leading to loss of livelihoods and diseases impacted on oil communities.
Speaking on the theme, “Infrastructure Security: Responsibility in Collective National Interest,” Abdullahi said the theme of the summit was apt at the period when the government was tackling resources regularisation, power, oil and gas, transportation, telecommunications and other infrastructures for the collective national interest.
He commended the organisers of the summit for bringing together key stakeholders within and outside the region whose mass experience would proffer solutions to the challenges of the infrastructures security in the country.
According to him, “it is sacrosanct for critical oil and gas infrastructure operators or partners and host communities to adopt duly care and best practices in other to guarantee a lasting solution to environmental devastation, collective economic losses, safety and security, loss of lives and social infrastructure.”
Abdullahi further urged stakeholders in the security sector and host communities to protect and safeguard their environment to achieve the intended goals of economic growth.
Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof Isa Ali Pantami, said the summit would be a wake-up call to stakeholders in the oil and gas sector, power, communications, telecommunications and other sectors to guide, protect and preserve all critical infrastructure in the country.
Pantami who was represented by Mr Adeleke Adewolu, the Executive Commissioner, Stakeholders Management Nigerian Communications Commission recalled that over 40920 cases of fiber optic cable cuts and 1307 cases of theft were recorded in recent time.