By Samuel Oyadongha
OGBIA— EXCITED locals turned out in their numbers, last week, to witness the inauguration of multi-pronged health intervention project at Oloibiri and adjoining communities in Ogbia Local Government Area, Bayelsa State, by Shell Petroleum Development Company, SPDC.
The elements were in unison with the epoch event, as the sun shone brightly amid light showers of rain to the surprise of many in an area known for its downpour at this time of the year.
The project, located at Kolo, about 25-minute drive from the iconic Oloibiri Well 1, where the company made the country’s first crude oil discovery in commercial quantity in 1958, is to cater for the wellbeing oil-rich Ogbia inhabitants.
Governor Seriake Dickson, represented by the deputy governor, Rear Admiral John Jonah (retd) inaugurated the Oloibiri Health Programme, an integrated and holistic approach to improving health and managing healthcare at the remodelled and equipped General Hospital, Kolo, as referral hub with 24-hour services.
He said: “Let me appreciate SPDC and its partners for also prioritising healthcare in the state by initiating the Oloibiri Health Programme.
“This is a laudable development as it will go a long way in complementing the various steps and policies we have already introduced in order to meet the healthcare demands of our citizens in Ogbia Local Government Area.”
Speaking at the event, Managing Director, Shell Petroleum Development Company and Country Chair, Shell Companies in Nigeria, Mr. Osagie Okunbor, described the projects as part of the three critical programmes implemented by Shell in commemoration of Nigeria’s centenary celebrations held in 2014.
The other projects, according to him, were the Port Harcourt Literary Society Library in Rivers State, where the company invested $5 million; and the upgrading of athletic infrastructure in five secondary schools in Delta State.
According to him, “the first phase projects inaugurated are the remodelled General Hospital, Kolo; water treatment plant; medical laboratory equipment at the College of Health Technology, Otuogidi, and dental chair at the Demonstration Clinic, Otuogidi.
“The second includes the Oloibiri Health Campus at Oloibiri Town, comprising the Oloibiri Health-for-Life Centre, Ward Health Centre, and a Knowledge Management and Research Centre.
“Other components of the second phase are 0.4km Oloibiri Access Road to the Health-for-life Centre and establishment of the Oloibiri Health Foundation to drive the projects’s sustainability.”