Four years after the Federal Government and a Chinese consortium signed an agreement for the construction of three greenfield refineries in
The refineries project, which is to cost
The Federal Government signed the greenfield refineries project agreement on
Based on the terms, 80 percent of the cost is to be funded with a loan provided by
But NNPC said the project was on course, and that the corporation was awaiting a white paper on the report of a task force that reviewed the plan on building the new refineries.
At one of the sites in Lekki area of
The large expanse of land meant for the project has some demarcation but no concrete structures to show evidence of any serious work.
In Bayelsa State, the land for one of the refineries has been acquired in Otuoke, the hometown of President
Secretary, Otuoke Community Development Committee, Pastor
He said also the NCDMB team gave assurances that work would begin soon.
At Ugbogiri, the refinery site in Kogi State, farmers are still cultivating the land, four years after the project was initiated.
But this was later changed to Ebiya-Ugbogiri in Ajaokuta local government.
Our reporter who visited the site at Ugbogiri observed that part of the land is being cultivated by farmers while the remaining portion lays fallow. There is not even a signpost to indicate that this is the proposed location for one of the three new refineries.
Resident of the community, Mr
Farmers who spoke to our reporter said they continued cultivating the land because government appeared not ready to start the project, adding that they were willing to vacate the land when the project is to start.
For his part, community Chief
"We are appealing to the government to do what is right and start the project because if nothing is done there now after election in 2015, it will still go back to politiking again and nothing would be done on it," he added.
'Project on course'
When contacted, the NNPC told
The corporation's spokesman Ohi Alegbe said a
He said the task force was to also design a blueprint for public-private partnerships to build small, medium and large-scale refineries across
"From the terms of reference of the task force as listed above, it would be noted that its work included proposing new ideas and designing investment models for greenfield refineries. This effectively meant that we had to stay action on the greenfield refinery projects to allow the task force complete its work," he said.
"The task force has since submitted its report. What government has done is to set up a white paper committee to review the report and come up with the Federal Government's position and line of action.
"We are still awaiting the white paper report which will give us a clear direction on which direction to proceed with regard to the proposed greenfield refineries and how to go about them. That is the position, that is where we are with the greenfield refinery projects."
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