By Emman Ovuakporie & Johnbosco Agbakwuru
ABUJA—STAKE-HOLDERS at a one day public hearing on a Bill for an Act to establish the Presidential programme on rehabilitation and reintegration for implementation of the Presidential Amnesty Programme in the Niger Delta region, yesterday said the implementation and reintegration of the programme were flawed.
This came as the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, empathised with the communities in the Niger Delta region, saying the region had over the years not benefitted much from the proceeds of oil extracted from the region despite the environmental hazards they had been subjected to.
Meanwhile, traditional rulers from oil producing communities have demanded that three percent of the total annual budget of oil companies, gas companies and gas processing companies should be set aside for the development of the oil communities as well as 10 percent for ecological fund instead of the five percent proposed.
Speaking while declaring open the public hearing organised by the Essien Ekpenyong Ayi-led Niger Delta Affairs Committee, in Abuja yesterday, Speaker Dogara said: “We are all aware that Nigeria is an oil producing state with the Niger Delta region responsible for more than 80 percent of her oil. The region has over the years not benefitted much from the proceeds of oil extracted from the region instead their farmlands and water have become an environmental mess leaving them with no means of eking out a living.”