By Emma Amaize
ASABAâ€”FORMER Minister of Information, Prof. Sam Oyovbaire says the overall concept of the Federal Government building another Petroleum Training Institute (PTI) at Kaduna and the timing of the project is wrong and urged the Federal Executive Council to overturn the decision.
Speaking in an interview with Vanguard at Asaba, Prof Oyovbaire said, â€œto the best of my knowledge, the concept is wrong and you see, such related institutions and industries should be sited where oil is found, and that should be anywhere else in Niger-Delta if addition is to the be made to the one in Effurun, Delta State that is yearning for expansionâ€.
â€œThe Presidency should halt the decision. Instead of siting another petroleum training institute in Kaduna, the money should be used to expand the PTI in Delta State or develop another one in the Niger-Delta, but, certainly, not Kaduna because oil is not produced thereâ€, he stated.
He said he was flabbergasted at the indices that was used to arrive at such a provocative decision, adding that an interventionist agency like the Petroleum Development Trust Fund (PDTF) was supposed to be headed by a Niger-Deltan, but, owing to policy somersault and other reasons, those who should not be executive secretaries were running the fund to the detriment of the Niger-Delta people.
Prof Oyovbaire said it was particularly annoying that the PTI in Delta was not fully functional in the actual sense of it and yet, the federal government was thinking of building another one outside the region, adding that if the Kaduna Refinery could be excused because of the difficulty in the transportation of petroleum product to the Northern part of the country, the location of petroleum training institution in Kaduna was inexcusable.
His words, â€œFrom all angles you view it, the decision is wrong and without meaning to offend the Presidency, it is a complete absence empathy to the people of the Niger-Delta, as the decision came at a time military forces from the federal government have bombarded the Gbaramatu clanÂ in Niger-Delta and displaced thousands of personsâ€.