From Paul Osuyi, Asaba
Despite claims by the Presidency that the ban on open grazing of cattles by southern governors is illegal, the decision has continued to gain the support of stakeholders.
The latest support for the ban on open grazing came from Traditional Rulers of Oil Mineral Producing Communities (TROMPCOM) on Wednesday in Asaba.
Rising from it’s 27th national conference, TROMPCOM, in a communiqué, restated it’s support for the unity of the country, and endorsed resolutions of the southern governors.
The communiqué was signed by the national chairman of the royal body, Felix Mujakperuo; and national secretary, Eze Dr. I.O. Asor.
TROMPCOM lamented the high rate of insecurity in the country particularly in the Niger Delta, urging the state and federal governments to deploy adequate security apparatus to protect the people from activities of violent herdsmen and unknown gunmen.
It expressed concern with the state of environmental degradation, unemployment and lack of social amenities in all oil minerals host communities, noting that the much anticipated socio-economic advantages derivable from the natural resources of the Niger Delta people, have eluded the region.
According to the communiqué, the royal fathers deprecated the state of infrastructural development in the Niger Delta, particularly the state of roads, standard schools, healthcare system, including the East-West Road.
“The conference underscore the position and role of traditional Rulers to lead from the front in the battle to emancipate its people from the clutches of deliberate deprivation and avoidable but seemingly endless impoverishment.
“The conference calls for legal instruments to institutionalize the relationship between oil and gas prospecting companies and host communities in the Niger Delta.
“The conference notes the progress being made in enacting the proposed Petroleum Industry Bill 2020. The conference resolve in particular that the PIB has not made provision for the representation of the oil producing communities and prescribed traditional institutions.
“The PIB has no provision for some form of affirmative action recognising the interest of the prescribed traditional institutions including the host communities, and that the proposed Trust fund designed for Host communities under the Bill should not be subject to protection of Oil facilities.
“That the protection of oil facilities in host communities remain and should be the responsibility of the Federal Government in its constitutional obligation to provide for the security and welfare of the people of the Niger Delta and Nigeria in general.
“The conference calls for the restoration of a constitutional role for traditional rulers in the governance architecture of the country.