By Festus Ahon & Ochuko Akuopha
CLUSTER Management Committee, CMC and Communities’ Representatives Committee, CRC, in the Oil Mining Lease, 30, have kicked against calls for the total disengagement of Heritage from the oil block.
The CMC and CRC, in a statement, held that those calling for the company to leave the oil block ran foul of the GMoU signed in the presence of the state government that every dispute must be resolved through dialogues.
The statement signed by Mr. Okpako Godwin Onome, Clement Udi and right others read: “As community leaders and Cluster Chairmen/Secretaries in the OML 30 we would ordinarily not respond to such publications, but when the issues involved affects our communities we believe our consent should be sought before such statements affecting is made.
“We as leaders and Cluster Chairmen/Secretaries in the OML 30 are bound by the GMoU signed by us and the company and witnessed by the Delta State Government, and will therefore not be party to blanket statements to the press without consultations and following due process as enunciated in the dispute resolution procedures of the GMOU.
“We are not defending the company and its failures, but rather advocate that we follow the dispute resolution procedures. It is explicitly stated in article 16.1, 16.6 and 16.7 of the GMoU that no party should resort to violence and self-help.
“The publication directly breaches Article 16.7, as the call to disengage definitely calls for disruption of Business Operations and we will not be party to actions that breaches the GMoU and affects the oil production in our oilfields.
“We therefore completely disassociate our clusters and communities from this illegality and call on the authors to consult widely so that we can put in motion dispute resolution process. Until this is exhausted we will not be party to requesting the company to leave if it falls within our purview.”