Assembly orders relocation of headquarters of DPR, others to Akwa Ibom

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TRACKING____The Akwa Ibom House of Assembly has directed the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to take immediate steps to relocate the head offices of the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and the National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS) to the state.

It also ordered one of the world’s largest international oil and gas companies, ExxonMobil, to relocate its operational base in Akwa Ibom.

The resolution followed a motion sponsored by the member representing Ini constituency, Emmanuel Ekpenyong at yesterday’s plenary in Uyo.

In his submission, Ekpenyong informed the House that the relocation of the headquarters of DPR and NAPIMS would have the ripple effect of forcing the oil major to also relocate its head office to the state.

He pointed out that Akwa Ibom contributes about 33 per cent of Nigeria’s daily oil production, and is by far, the highest oil-producing state in the country.

The lawmaker said with the adverse environmental impact caused by crude oil and natural gas production such as air and ground water pollution, damage to flora and fauna, exposure of biota to contaminants, among other hazards, ExxonMobil should have its operational base in the state to attract economic prosperity and development to the people.

He stated: “Whereas as the saying goes, “to whom much is given, much is expected”

Ekpenyong went on: “Akwa Ibom State, having given the highest volume of oil and revenue to the Federal Republic of Nigeria, expects the Federal Government to relocate the head offices of two NNPC subsidiaries, namely the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and the National Petroleum Investment Management Services (NAPIMS) to Akwa Ibom State.”

The Assembly, therefore, resolved that a copy of the resolution be forwarded to President Muhammadu Buhari and members of the National Assembly from Akwa Ibom.

Earlier, the Speaker, Mr. Aniekan Bassey, said the refusal of DPR and NAPIMS to relocate to the state was a deliberate attempt at depriving Akwa Ibom people of their rights and privileges, and commended Ekpeyong for sponsoring the motion, which he described as timely.

While commending the lawmakers for supporting the request, which he said would foster development in the state, the speaker directed the Clerk, Mandu Umoren, to communicate the resolution of the House to the appropriate authorities.

Also, the House received a motion on ‘Urgent Need to Curb Extortion of Electricity Consumers in Akwa Ibom State” sponsored by the representative of Mkpat Enin constituency, Mr. Victor Ekwere.

The motion was referred to the Committee on Rural Development and Public Utilities to interface with the Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution Company (PHED) and report back to the chamber within two weeks.

Similarly, the legislature also received a motion on ‘The Need for Compliance with the Provisions of the Nigerian Local Content Law and Memorandum of Agreement by Multi National and Oil Servicing Companies Operating within the Territorial Waters of Akwa Ibom State’, sponsored by the member representing Ikot Ekpene/Obot Akara State Constituency, Idongesit Ntekpere.

Meanwhile, the House has adjourned plenary to Tuesday, February 18, 2020.

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