NNPC dismisses story of impending N36bn royalty to Alesa-Eleme community

Kalu Kalu, Abuja

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The Management of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has dismissed the insinuations that the sum of N36bn compensation was approved for the Alesa-Eleme community in Rivers State, as royalty for playing host to the Port Harcourt Refining Company, a subsidiary of the corporation.

In a statement, the Corporation’s Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Mr. Ndu Ughamadu, traced the origin of the compensation story to a traditional ruler, regarded as a claimant to the Alesa-Eleme traditional stool.

He stated that the traditional ruler made the announcement after a purported meeting with the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources and Board Chairman of the Corporation, Dr. Emanuel Ibe Kachikwu.

“NNPC affirmed that checks with the Minister indicated that no such meeting at which any such approval or promises were made took place, adding that the apparently fabricated story was designed to cause disharmony between the NNPC and the hospitable Alesa-Eleme Community.

The corporation emphasized that through the years, the Port Harcourt Refinery had enjoyed cordial relations with all the 10 communities in Eleme where the refinery is located, including Alesa Eleme and Alade Eleme through the Joint Community Relations committee (JCRC),”the statement said.

Mr Ughamadu noted that the JCRC, comprising of representatives from the various interest groups of the community, had been relating with the Management of Port Harcourt refinery on a sustained basis for creation and execution of development projects and the needs of the communities.

Thanking the peace-loving people of Eleme for their love and hospitality through the decades, the corporation implored the community dwellers, especially the youths, to discountenance  the story of an impending N36bn compensation, as there was no such approval or payment.