By Ediri Ejoh
SEVEN Energy, the leading indigenous integrated gas development, production and distribution company in south east Nigeria, has reaffirmed its commitment to implementing the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights initiative (VPI) when it hosted the Steering Committee of the VPI at the Seven Energy Security Forum in Eket, Akwa Ibom State.
The Seven Energy Security Forum is a monthly stakeholder engagement held in Akwa Ibom state to facilitate dialogue and flow of information between oil and gas companies and related government security agencies in Akwa Ibom State.
The delegation from the VPI, led by the Chairman of the Global Steering Committee, Ronald Roosdorp, included representatives from the Netherlands, Switzerland, Ghana and the UK ,as well as from International and Nigerian companies and non-governmental organisations who are signatories to the VPI.
Speaking at the Forum, Ian Brown-Peterside, Managing Director Midstream, Seven Energy, said: “We are delighted to host the Voluntary Principles delegation, and particularly pleased to welcome the delegation to the Security Forum. We are fully committed to upholding human rights and ethical behaviors, and central to this is engaging communities and stakeholders proactively and consistently.
“The Security Forum is an important part of this ongoing engagement – our membership of the VPI is not just lip service. We have a strong focus on and commitment to compliance issues and human rights and our membership of VPI is a confirmation of that commitment. We are indeed living up to the tenets”.
Brown-Peterside added that: “It was an excellent opportunity to engage directly with our key stakeholders, government security agencies, the steering committee and other members of the VPI from all over the world. We demonstrated how we implement the voluntary principles in our operations and are proud that Seven Energy is the first and only indigenous oil and gas company to sign up to the VPI.
Also, Ronald Roosdorp, Committee Chairman of VPI, stated that: ”Collaboration is helping to achieve more synergy and better results and companies have a big role to play in engaging communities. The VPI has come a long way in 15 years. We engage organisations, government and other stakeholders.
We also have sessions with government where we discuss issues such as outreach. This forum with Seven Energy is a giant step in the right direction and we shall be taking back a lot of ideas and suggestions to the Steering Committee.”