The Petroleum Commission shall in 2019 operationalize a five year Strategic Plan to address concerns and complaints regarding development in the Western Region. The 2019- 2023 Strategic Plan would be compiled with inputs by the Working Group constituted at the Western Region House of Chiefs some years ago. The Working Group was tasked to identify, highlight and advice on issues within the oil and gas industry that affects the Western Region. With this intervention, Chiefs and traditional authorities in the region could have an appropriate means of seeking redress and support from the regulator; Petroleum Commission.
Speaking at the 4th Annual engagement with the Western Region House of Chiefs today, held at the Best Western Atlantic Hotel in Takoradi, Chief Executive Officer for the Petroleum Commission, Egbert Faibelle findings and recommendations made by the Working Group will be documented to strategically inform decisions and actions by the regulator going forward.
“In other to show that we do not intend ensure that the deliberations we have annually and also that the meetings of the petroleum commission western region house of chiefs working group do not remain mere talk shops, I have directed that by the end of third quarter 2019 the understandings raised should be compiled into a four year strategic plan to serve as a guide to all of us between the period 2019 to 2023″, Mr Faibelle assured.
Mr. Faibelle reiterated the Petroleum Commission’s commitment to managing the adverse impact of the oil and gas operations on host communities. In that vein, he added that, the regulator, the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation and industry players in the oil and gas sector shall not relent in the discharge of their social investment programmes.
”Besides the mandatory requirement of managing the adverse impact of upstream petroleum activities on host communities, the commission is also very keen in ensuring that the industry invests in the communities through their corporate social investment initiatives to ensure sustainable developments and shared benefits. The commission therefore seeks to ensure that the oil companies including our own GNPC operating in our basins, give back to society by way of social investments or projects especially in communities that are impacted most by their operations, such economic interventions involve investments in education, healthcare, social amenities livelihood restoration etc”, he mentioned
Mr Faibelle took the opportunity to draw stakeholders’ attention and call for action to curb breaches committed by fishermen on safety zones cast around offshore oil and gas installations. He remarked that cases of these breeches are on the rise, and thus require a collective action to address it.
“Reports indicate an increasing rate of fishing incursions into the safety zones around our offshore installations. I will like to take this opportunity to reiterate my appeal to Nananom and our hard working fishing fishing communities that these zones are earmarked to also protect them as well as their activities. And so they should respect the zones as such”, he stated.
He continued that “government on his part through the commission will intensify and extend community education across the coastal belt of Ghana to reach other fishers beyond the region and then ensure that the petroleum activities are not carried up at the expense of fishing and other lawful activities”
Story: Eric Gyetuah/Skyy News