Senate gives NLNG 2 months to pay host communities N18.4bn

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The Senate has ordered Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Limited to pay N18.4 billion in compensation to 73 villages in Rivers State’s Obiafu and Soku to Bonny for taking possession of and losing usage of the impacted land due to pipeline rights of way through the communities. In addition, the Senate mandated that the payment be made in sixty days.

Following the Senate’s review of the report by its Committee on Ethics, Privileges, and Public Petitions, which looked into a petition from the communities, the resolutions were passed.

Presenting the report, the committee chairman, Senator Patrick Akinyelure said following its incorporation, the NLNG acquired landed properties in Rivers State spanning over 210 kilometres for use as its pipelines Right of Way which ended at the export terminal of the NLNG in Finima, Bonny local government of the state.
According to him, “That there were over 73 communities and over 200 families whose hitherto agrarian source of livelihood was negatively impacted upon by the said acquisition.

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“That after the recent intervention of the Senate and after being given one month instead of 7 days allowed by the Senate to provide evidence of payment to the Committee, the NLNG could only show evidence of payment to some individuals, families and communities.
“The total amount it paid for part of the 210 kilometers of land acquired for pipelines Rights of Way was N74,642,773.00 which is not significant when compared to the sum of N18.4 billion approximately demanded by the 73 communities and over 200 families, which has never been objected to by the NLNG up till now.
“That the payment made covered only 39 communities and 73 individuals and families; and that there was no Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU) signed between the communities and NLNG on future obligations in the name of Corporate Social Responsibility with the impacted communities.”

He said there was evidence that other oil companies such as Shell Petroleum Development Company, Totalfina, Elf Petroleum, Agip Oil Company paid compensation for the loss of use of land to their host communities.

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