NNPC, Oil Firms Partner, Build Solar Powered Water Project for Bayelsa Community

Olusegun Samuel in Yenagoa

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and an indigenous oil exploration company, First Exploration and Petroleum Development Company Limited in partnership with the KEFFES Rural Development Foundation, have built a solar powered water project for the indigenes of Koluama 1 in Southern Ijaw Local Government Council of the Bayelsa state.

The project was expected to provide indigenes of the benefiting community and its environs with healthy and portable water to reduce cases of water borne disease.
Representative of the indigenous oil firm, First E and P, Mr. Gerald Makiri, said the solar powered water project is a pilot test that will be replicated around the host communities.

He said “Fela in his popular song says water no get enemy, so, we are hoping that this water will bring unity to this community. We are hoping that as you drink from the borehole sickness will varnish, more prosperity to Koluama 1, more prosperity to the women, youths, boys and girls,” he said.

Receiving the project, Chairman of KEFFES Rural Development Foundation, Matthew Sele-epri, who was represented by HRH Moses Theophilus – Kenibara VII (Amadabo of Moko-Ama Sangana Kingdom) thanked both First E and P and NNPC for the kind gesture but asked that more points should be built in the pilot scheme in Koluama 1 and be replicated across all the KEFFES communities.

He pointed out that the KEFFES is a foundation representing the eight producing communities comprising Koluama 1 and 2; Ezetu 1 and 2; Foropa, Fish Town; Ekeni; and Sangana, located along the Atlantic coastline.

He noted that though the project would be the first of its kind in the KEFFES rural communities, “If you can recall that over time all our communities are surrounded with water but portable water to drink is a problem and today as God may have it First E and P has been able to do delivered on social development and so we want to appreciate first and E and P for this a very kind and a very proactive intervention.

“We are still demanding that this should be replicated in all the communities and all the KEFFES host communities because that is the only way we can see the goodness of this . Let it be replicated as it is done in Koluama 1. Let it also be done for all the communities for us to see this enjoyment we are seeing today.

“Since we are not reticulating that water and we can’t expect the whole community to be coming to fetch. So, we want to request that you do more of it kind”.

Théophillus urged the NNPC to act fast on social interventions projects to avert protest by affected communities, saying “the NNPC joint venture each time that First E and P request something that this has to be done in the community please don’t hesitate because most often time we are being told that NNPC refuse to approve project due to join venture.”