Posted by News Express | 23 August 2013 | 4,806 times
The chairperson of a Niger Delta-based Non-Governmental Organisation, the Centre for Peace and Conflict Resolution, Queen Akasoba Duke-Abiola, has advised the Federal Government to take a cue from the corporate responsibility laws of the Qatari emirate which protect the social and economic rights of oil producing communities in the Arab country.
Queen Duke-Abiola, who is also the Akasoba of Kalabari, gave this charge in a statement issued in Abuja to congratulate the people of Qatar on the ascension of Sheikh Tamin bin Hamad Al Thani as the new Emir of Qatar.
The community activist noted that the Arab Nation which gained independence in 1971 has effective laws and policies on environmental protection and infrastructural development of host communities which all multi-national companies operating in the area strictly enforce. She stressed the need to urgently initiate steps to save the Niger Delta from further devastation, saying that the Petroleum Industry Bill currently before the National Assembly should be passed without further hesitation in the interest of the nation.
The activist lamented that the Niger Delta region has suffered neglect by successive governments since independence. She wondered how oil companies which declare billions of dollars in annual profit could consistently treat their host communities with disdain and without due regard for international best practices in the extractive industry.
Queen Duke-Abiola explained that the smooth transition of power in Qatar is directly linked to the social justice embedded in the system of administering its oil resources for the greater good of citizens as well as implementation of non-discriminatory state policies in all sectors.
She recalled that in the year 2003, the Qatari Government abolished the Sharia courts system and opened up the space for multi religious harmony in line with the desires of citizens and tourists to that country.
While congratulating Emir Hamad bin Khalifa and Sheikha Moza on the ascension of the new Qatari emir, the Akasoba of Kalabari Kingdom urged the new monarch to work assiduously towards building a greater nation which would measure up favorably with others in contemporary times.
•Photo: Queen Akasoba Duke-Abiola (right) with President of Argentina, HE, Cristina Fernandez De Kirchner.
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