By Simon Ebegbulem
BENINâ€” Edo state Commissioner on the Board of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Mr Donald Omorodion, has vowed to utilize the funds meant for the oil producing communities in the state for the development of the areas.
He lamented that oil producing communities in the state had suffered untold hardship due to what he described as â€œunnecessary politics,â€ which played out before his emergence, assuring, however, that he will look critically at the problems confronting oil communities and find lasting solutions to them with the funds accruing to the state.
Omorodion spoke at a reception organized for him by African Network for Economic and Environment Justice (ANEEJ) and leaders of Host communities of Oil and Gas, weekend, in Benin City.
According to him, â€œwe were told that they built sixty blocks of classrooms. But we have not seen any thing on ground because if we have that, our people in the oil communities will not be complaining.
â€œHowever, we will take the steps of the Comrade Governor who gave all his support through out the struggle. I want to assure that it will no longer be business as usual. Any money meant for the oil producing communities must be used for them to have rapid development of the area.
â€œI am also grateful to the Comrade governor for his support throughout the struggle in Abuja . I grew up from a humble background and I know what poverty is all about. I will use this opportunity given to me by God to fight poverty in oil producing communities.
â€œIt will not be like when they said they built sixty schools but nothing is on ground to justify their claims.â€
President of the ANEEJ, Reverend David Ugolor, state chairman of Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, Comrade Kaduna Eboigbe and the chairman of the Host communities of Oil and Gas, Dr Sam Igbineweka, attributed problems of the oil producing communities to alleged failure of the NDDC to consult the people of the area before citing projects.