Tony John, Port Harcourt
Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has declared that part of the crisis bedeviling the Niger Delta region was refusal of multinationals to encourage host communities with key appointments.
Governor Wike spoke, on Tuesday, during a courtesy visit by the leadership of Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC), saying that local content participation is key to harmony and sustained development.
Said he, “I urge the multinationals and the NBC to encourage Rivers people through local content participation.
“Part of the crisis in the Niger Delta is that some companies relegate the people of the area in the allocation of management positions”.
He said the ugly situation should be checked to stop avoidable conflicts as noticed in the relationship between Shell and some host communities.
The governor, however, expressed happiness that the NBC is expanding its operations in the state.
“This expansion will create more employment and internally generated revenue. This state is peaceful for investments”, he said.
The governor stated that the documents for the land acquired by NBC for their expansion would be granted by his administration.
Earlier, the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the NBC, Ambassador Segun Apata , disclosed that the company is working towards building a mega plant in Port Harcourt.
Apata said that the new plant would be a hub for the zone with new jobs added across the board. He said that the new plant will cover 28,000 square metres.
The NBC Chairman appealed to Governor Wike to approve a governor’s consent for the acquired land, when the company makes its application.
“We want to double our production to 75 million unit cases”, he said.