OrderPaperToday – An ad-hoc committee of the House of Representatives has given Oriental Energy 48 hours to submit relevant documents backing its claim of appropriate waste disposal from its operations.
The committee also expressed displeasure with the Managing Directors of the Nigerian Agip Oil Company (NAOC) and Pan Ocean Limited respectively for failing to honor its invitation to an investigative hearing.
The adhoc committee set up by the House at plenary via a motion in July this year is investigating the “non-inclusion of waste management/disposal and other infringements by oil companies/multinationals within the Niger Delta region and other places where they operate”.
The committee was also mandated to investigate the hazardous activities of the oil companies which posed threats to human existence in the region.
The committee which began sitting on Wednesday had previously met with the officials of the Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Ltd and scheduled to meet with other relevant stakeholders in the oil sector.
At the resumed session of the probe on Thursday, NAOC, Pan Ocean, Oriental Energy, New Cross Petroleum and Brittania-U Nigerian limited were expected to make presentations on their waste management and disposal schemes.
However, the managing directors of NAOC and Pan Ocean earlier summoned failed to appear without any formal communication as to why they were absent.
Although AGIP sent a representative without a formal communication to the Committee which happen to be the norm, this got the lawmakers infuriated as there was no official letter showing they were representing the company.
Consequently, members took turns to express their displeasure as the adhoc committee chairman, Mr. Agom Jarigbe Agom (PDP, Cross River) put the question on whether the managing directors should be re-invited and the response was in the affirmative.
Hitting the gavel, Agom said: “The decision is that NAOC should excuse us and we will write to your MD to reach us and we get a date for him, for AGIP to appear before this committee. We can excuse NAOC for now and we will communicate with the MD of NAOC because, as far as we are concerned, we don’t know the people before us.
“And Pan Ocean, there is no letter from the MD. Sorry, we can’t take you. We will fix another date and give you a chance to appear before this committee.”
In his own presentation, the General Manager, Environmental Health Safety Security of Oriental Energy Resources, Mr. Dammy Jones, told the investigative committee that that his company had only one oil bloc it was operating on.
He said that the company had a proper waste management and disposal scheme which was environmentally friendly.
“Oriental Energy operates only one field as we speak, that is the Ebok field that came into production operation in 2011. We do have a block and another field called Okwok. Okwok, we have not started production, we are still at the development stage, we don’t have any production from Okwok.
“OML 115 is the only bloc Oriental has. Currently, there is nothing on OML 115 as we speak. Technically speaking, we only have Ebok field and Ebok is a marginal field. We started operation there in 2011 like I said, and we’ve been producing as a marginal field
“The Ebok solid waste stamp in and sank. And again that’s the error we saw and I think because of the volume of document we are loading up in our system at that time. Like I said in my opening remark, we have document that are auditable from the point of generation of the waste, transporting the waste, treatment of the waste, we so have waste certificate and we retire that to DPR.
“At every point in waste management, we have waste manifest that are assigned by appropriate authority as they go down in chain and this audited are auditable and those are the ones we will be presenting today”, he said.
Ruling on the matter, the chairman directed that the company should supply the committee with all relevant documents within 48 hours to enhance the investigation.