The Dodo River Communities Development Association in Ekeremor Local Area of Bayelsa on Thursday said it spent N77.87 million on community development in 2019 fiscal year.
Mr Francis Amamogiran, the Chairman of the association, who spoke at the 8th Annual General Meeting of the group said the fund came from Chevron Nigeria Ltd. (CNL) as development obligation under a Global Memorandum of Understanding (GMoU).
According to him, the association generated a total income of N93.93 million in 2019 slightly higher than the N82.56million it got in 2018.
He said that N35.19 million was spent in direct project expenditure, while N12.27million general and administrative costs, N23.34million on scholarships, while N7.06million went for Community Engagement Management Board (CEMB) administrative expenditures.
“This annual general meeting is a means of demonstrating one of the GMoU objectives, which is transparency and accountability. This will enable us have the desired trust of our people in our dealings as we carry out our stewardship function.
“We will not stop to call on government at various levels, the local government in particular to be fully involved to encourage, guide, monitor and provide necessary support in community development planning and implementation,” Amamogiran said.
Mr Esimaje Brikinn, the General Manager in charge of Public Affairs at CNL applauded the association for successful management of the development process and achieving community empowerment and sustainable development.
Brikinn, who was represented by Mr Elija Bikikoro, Team Lead at CNL assured that in spite of the harsh global environment for the energy sector, the oil firm remained committed to meeting its social obligations to its host communities.
“We are glad that Dodo River Community Development Association has executed and commissioned several development projects including concrete walkways, potable water, town halls, electricity power project and others.
“It is also heartwarming to note that that the association has trained hundreds of persons in diverse vocational skills in addition to a special economic empowerment as well as adult education programme for women and schorship for students from the communities,” Brikinn said.
Mr Mark Christmas, Secretary of the association applauded members of the host community for their peaceful disposition and use of dialogue, which resulted to the award of peace bonus by CNL.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that representatives of Chevron host communities comprising youths and women, traditional rulers in Ekeremor LGA attended the meeting held at Dodo River Communities Secretariat in Yenagoa.