KEFFES Foundation inaugurates N24m projects in Chevron’s host communities in Bayelsa
By Kenechukwu Obiajuru, Yenagoa.
KEFFES Rural Development Foundation (RDF) at the weekend inaugurated some 20 projects in eight communities hosting the operations of Chevron Nigeria Limited in Bayelsa.
It was learnt that the 20 projects were implemented at a total cost of N241.43 million over the last two years.
KEFFES, is an acronym for eight Chevron host communities in Bayelsa comprising Koluama 1 & 2, Ezetu 1 & 2, Foropa, Fish Town, Ekeni and Sangana located along the Atlantic coastline within Bayelsa.
Speaking at the inauguration ceremony at Koluama 1, in Southern Ijaw Local Government Area (LGA), Mr Mathew Sele-Epri Chairman of KEFFES RDF said that the projects were financed by Chevron.
According to him, the oil firm had ensured prompt release of funds to the RDF under the Global Memorandum of Understanding (GMoU) between Chevron and its host communities in Southern Ijaw and Brass LGAs in Bayelsa.
“As you may know, KEFFES RDF is saddled with the responsibility of developing the KEFFES communities and it is furtherance of this mandate that we are gathered here.
“The KEFFES RDF embarked on some 20 capital projects years back and we are here today to commission these projects so they can be put to use for the benefit of the members of the KEFFES communities.
“These projects range from Educational interventions in building of teachers’ quarters to accommodate teachers and youth corps members, roads, power, bridges amongst others.
“These projects were executed with funds from FEFFES/NNPC/Chevron GMoU, our commitment to development of our communities was a major drive towards to prudent management of limited funds accruing to FEFFES RDF,” Sele-Eprie said.
Mr Christmas Brass who represented the Bayelsa Commissioner for Mineral Resources, Mr Markson Fefegha cut the tape to inaugurate the projects in Koluama 1.
The projects are, two 100 meters by 4 meters concerete walkways and teachers quarters to symbolize inauguration of other projects sited across the eight communities.
Brass applauded the management of Chevron for meeting its social obligations to Bayelsa communities under the GMoU supervised by the Bayelsa Ministry of Mineral Resources.
Speaking on behalf of the benefiting communities Chief Marcus Gorley appealed to Bayelsa government to compliment the efforts of Chevron and other oil firms by extending development to rural oil communities.
He said that the development intervention by oil firms was appreciated but grossly inadequate given the development challenges in the Niger Delta and urged the state to channel part of its 13 per cent derivation funds to oil communities