Former Niger Delta agitators have commended Acting President Yemi Osinbanjo for directing that oil firms relocate their headquarters to oil bearing states within the Niger-Delta region.
The ex-agitators said that the decision will further calm frayed nerves in the volatile oil-rich areas.
Chairman of the Phase II Amnesty Programme beneficiaries, Salvation Rufus,told journalists in Yenagoa on Monday that the directive would fast track the development of the region.
He also reserved praise for the Minister of State for Petroleum, Ibe Kachikwu as well as the Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on Niger Delta affairs, Paul Boroh, for their efforts in ensuring the success of the new partnership between host communities, the federal government and multinational oil companies.
Rufus noted that the youths in the region are happy with the efforts of the present administration, particularly for considering them as active stakeholders in the oil and gas sector.
He also commended the idea of establishing modular refineries to phase off illegal refining activities that further deteriorate the environment in the creeks of the Niger Delta.
The ex-militant noted that the ongoing collaboration between the offices of the Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta, the Coordinator of the Presidential Amnesty Programme and that of the Minister of State for Petroleum was yielding results.
He added that such collaboration will eventually create job opportunities for young people in the Niger Delta thereby making them unavailable for restiveness.
Acting President Osinbajo gave the directive that oil companies should have their headquarters in oil producing states during his visit to Akwa Ibom State on Thursday in the ongoing tour of Niger Delta communities.
Osinbajo had urged Kachikwu to begin consultations with International Oil Companies, IOCs, on the way forward to actualize the directive, adding that “it is the right thing to do”.