7 March 2012

Nigeria: Chevron Finally Extinguishes Koluma Gas Fire

FIRE from the gas rig explosion at Chevron Nigeria Limited facility in Koluama clan, Southern Ijaw Local Government Area of Bayelsa State, which had raged since January 16, has been put out, 46 days after.

A community leader and chairman of Koluama 2 Committee on Education, Apostle Jonas Kwomo, confirmed to Vanguard that the fire was extinguished on Friday.

Meanwhile, President Goodluck Jonathan has ordered the Amnesty Committee office to initiate and implement a youth and women empowerment programme for indigenes of the eight KEFFES communities affected by the Chevron rig gas explosion.

The training is expected to commence next week with series of meetings on those to be involved in the training programme taking place already.

President Jonathan, in a directive to the Special Adviser on Niger Delta Affairs, Mr. Kingsley Kuku, ordered the various ministries and parastatals including the Amnesty Implementation Office, to visit the affected area, initiate programmes and training that will assist the youths and women to become employable in the oil exploration companies operating in the area.

Also, succour came the way of the communities affected by the recent gas fire, following the arrival of additional relief material for the communities courtesy of the Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke.

The material which included about 4,000 cartoons of table water arrived the Yenagoa water front weekend, for onward distribution to the affected communities of - Koluama 1, Koluama 11, Ekeni, Foropa, Fishtown, Ezetu 1, Ezetu 11 and Sangana, all in the Southern Ijaw council.

Before now, the Minister through the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, it was learnt had dispatched bags of rice, beans, antiseptic soaps, toiletries, cloths vegetable oil and dairy products to the communities.

Christopher Tuodo, Chairman of the Keffes Rural Development Foundation, who received the items on behalf of the eight communities under the Keffes umbrella, thanked the Minister for living up to an earlier promise during her visit to the communities few weeks ago.

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