Shell Development Company of Nigeria (SPDC) says it has spent N41.1 billion or $228 million in 37 active Global Memorandum of Understanding (GMoU) clusters in four states since 2006.
Igo Weli, General Manager External Relations of SPDC made the disclosure at the project commissioning and graduation ceremony for enterprise development beneficiaries held by Tarakiri GMoU Cluster Development Board in Yenagoa on Wednesday.
Weli who was represented at the event by Evans Krukrubo, Adviser External Relations West Assets said SPDC Joint Venture (JV) introduced the GMoU model in 2006 and named the four states as Rivers, Delta, Bayelsa and Abia.
He stated that the event also marked the handover of 24 completed projects valued at N496.9 million to Ayamasa, Agbere, Isampou, Ofoni, Agbidiama and Egbema-Angalabiri communities in the Tarakiri GMoU Cluster Development Board.
The communities are in Ekeremor and Sagbama local government areas of Bayelsa State just as Weli encouraged other communities to emulate the Tarakiri GMoU Cluster “and devise peaceful and progressive schemes to develop our communities.”
He disclosed that a cluster of communities and representatives of state, local governments, SPDC and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) sign an agreement to enable SPDC JV “provide secure five-year funding for communities to implement development projects of their choice.”
According to him, the cluster development board manages the funds and projects under the guidance of a mentoring NGO in SPDC’s way of encouraging collaboration within its communities.
Earlier, Jude Ebibokefie, Chairman of Tarakiri GMoU Cluster Development Board highlighted the benefits of the GMoU framework other than significant improvement in the infrastructural capacity of constituent communities.
Ebibokefie said the benefits include creation and maintenance of harmonious relationship between SPDC and the Tarakiri GMoU Cluster and improved participation and consensus building among the stakeholders.
He said other benefits are local economic boost, provision of jobs for the youths and women, promotion of SPDC’s corporate image in the cluster and drive of the communities towards sustainable development.