Uche Usim, Abuja
Minister of State, Petroleum Resources, Mr Timipre Sylva on Thursday charged the local and International Oil Companies (IOCs) to help develop their host communities to sustain peace and boost economic growth.
Sylva gave the charge at the finals of the 2019 Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Science Quiz competition in Abuja.
He said that the need for corporate organisations to give back to society was imperative to guarantee smooth production and operations.
He urged them to emulate what the NNPC was doing under its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) blueprint, especially with the development of students who represent the future of the country.
He expressed joy to be part of the event, describing it as a world-class initiative as it will not only prepare the youth for the near future but build a sense of nationalism in them.
“What is happening here today will be remembered by these children with nostalgia in future.
“We commend NNPC for this giant stride and call on other agencies to emulate this initiative to give back to the community.
“Oil and gas companies are duty bound to give back to the communities where exploration is carried out to bring relief to the people,”he said.
In his remarks, the Group Managing Director of NNPC, Mr Mele Kyari said that the corporation as an enabler company would continue to contribute to ensure a greater Nigeria.
He explained that the competition was one aspect of the corporation’s effort to support nation building.
“Building a successful nation has to deal with talent management and as a corporation, we try to recognise them young and help them to develop it well.
“NNPC will continue to use its CSR to develop intellects, develop talents, build schools as an enabler,”he said.
He noted that for Nigeria to secure it place in global space it requires sound intellectual capacity.
“This is why we are interested in the kids,” he added.
He urged the participants to put in their best and make their schools, parents, community and the country at large proud.
Also, President of Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote said that the importance of education cannot be overemphasized in nation building.
He said that since the inception of the competition in 2000, the NNPC had helped to discover the next generation of scientists in the country.
According to him, emerging economies like Nigeria need scientists that can think out of the box to solve problems.
“I encourage you to put in your best, at this stage, you all are already winners.
“I encourage you not to be inspired by the intellectuals you will meet today but always remember that the future belongs to you,”, he admonished.