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BusinessDay

Ondo communities want Chevron out over ‘breach of agreement’

Thousands of residents of nine communities under the Molutehin-Jinrinwo Development Trust in the Ilaje local government area of Ondo State have issued an ultimatum to Chevron Corporation to vacate their locality over an alleged breach of agreement.

The nine communities are Awoye, Molutehin, Gbadira, Jinrinwo, Ugbo, Mishe, Erona and two others. The protesting residents, who recently stormed Chevron’s station at Awoye in Ilaje, also accused the international oil company of failing to pay royalty and undertake corporate social responsibility projects in their areas.

They alleged that Chevron had an agreement to pay a royalty to the communities but has failed to do so for over 30 years.

The angry protesters said the company no longer enjoy the backing of the community since it has failed to honour the agreement between them.

Armed with placards as they chanted various solidarity songs to show their grievances, they vowed to continue their peaceful protest until the company attend to their demands.

Some of the inscriptions on the placards read: “We deserve better condition, “Chevron should incorporate our trust, “Over 30 years of operation, no employment, enough is enough.

“Our land, our heritage, “We need employment from Chevron, “It is our right to protest, “No water, electricity, schools in our land, “We have been marginalised for too long”.

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Chairman of the Molutehin-Jinrinwo Development Trust, Kelly Nomiye said there was a need for an immediate plan for the development of the nine communities under Molutehin-Jinrinwo Development Trust such as building of grade (A) roads and telecommunication networks, electricity potable water, modern river transportation, well equipped and staffed hospitals, the establishment of standard school and sand filling and pilling in the communities.

In the letter of demands of collaboration of baales of Molutehin-Jinrinwo Development Trust, entitled; Community Request From Chevron Nigeria Limited which was written to the general manager, policy, government and public affairs (PGPA), Esimaje Brikinn’s, they also requested for an immediate sitting of Chevron regional office at Ode-Ugbo with tank farm situated in Ugbo kingdom.

The letter of request which was signed by their chairman and secretary, Mese Ilemobayo and Aworunse Kayode, respectively also read, “Employment of five persons from each of the nine communities every year as contract staff, provision of two-speed boats with Yamaha 200HP engine for each of the nine communities.

“Joint stakeholders’ semi-annual assessment of the status of community development, which will include the community elders, youth, women group, representatives, company and the kingdom.

“All the baales should be paid a monthly sum of N200,000 each, increment of scholarship both tertiary and secondary institution (in number and amount), setting up of skill acquisition centres for women and youth for self-reliance.

“They also demanded the incorporation of Molutehin-Jinrinwo Development Trust, N30 million credit scheme for each of the nine communities to aid business development, especially for the women.

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