March 2, 2024

Kikuube leaders demand for oil field tours abroad to get exposure and oil experience

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KIKUUBE

Kikuube district local leadership have asked oil companies in the Albertine region to sponsor them with oil field tours abroad to enable the get exposure and oil experience in the sector.

Local leaders say that several oil activities have been implemented in their district but little has been put to their exposure to enable them participate effectively in the processes of exploration now they need to go to oil reach countries to learn how the sector can benefit them.

“When I was still the district chairperson here, we had almost reached the final stages of the exchange visit and this time it was not with in the country but abroad but when COVID 19 came, it changed everything,” Kaziini Francis Twinomujuni the Buhaguzi County Member of Parliament, said.

Twinomujuni, the Buhaguzi county legislator also member of Parliamentary committee on Environment and Natural Resources, said that since he belongs to the committee responsible with natural resources, he will lead the rest of the leaders to demand accountability of any oil related activities in the district.

“Together with you, now that I belong to that committee, we shall change things. We shall not blame CNOOC for what we have not asked but as long as we work as a team, I will lead you to any office that concerns with oil related activities,” Twinomujuni said.

Twinomujuni made the remarks during the sensitization of stakeholders in oil and gas value chain, upcoming infrastructure development and social/environmental safeguards meeting held at Kikuube district headquarters on Wednesday. 

COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENTS

Twinomujuni tasked CNOOC to put a contact office in Kikuube district to ease communication between the communities in the oil reach district and the officials of the oil company.

He said during the time of staff reduction by CNOOC brought about by COVID 19, locals were most affected at the expense on non-residents which violated the agreed local content employment.

Robert Byaruhanga, consultant in oil and gas but also a member of the Mwitanzige energy services limited, said local council leadership of Kikuube district local government has been trained to enable them participate fully in the oil and gas sector since the national local content policy provides for their participation.

“Apparently, Oil and gas have signed the final investment decision that means a number of activities have been opened and now things are going to happen. The district needs to come in handy to oversee the various activities that are taking place in the oil and gas sector,” Byaruhanga said.

Paul Mulindwa, the Kitara Civil Society Organizations Network Executive director said the target is people’s elected representatives in the mainstream politics but also they target the local leaders at Sub County, parish and village levels to sensitize them about what is happening in the oil and gas sector in the districts of Kikuube, Hoima, Hoima city and engage the officials of the Bunyoro Kitara Kingdom.

“The main purpose of our engagements is awareness creation on oil and gas, social and environmental safeguards, how our rights are protected, how the rights of others including the animals and human dignity are all protected,” Mulindwa said.

LOCAL LEADERS SPEAK

  • Agnes Nyangoma Mukooto, the district Councilor representing the Elderly in the Kikuube district council said elders need small scale projects like poultry, piggery among others to boost their family incomes and also benefit in the oil and gas projects.

“With our old age, we ask the oil companies to give us projects that we can manage to look after,” Nyangoma said.

  • Susan Kabahindi, the District Councilor for Buhimba Town council said they also need scholarships to the youths and orphans to enable them attain skills that fit the oil and gas sector.
  • Edward Kusiima the District Councilor for PWDs Kikuube district said they have been left behind and that they haven’t benefited in the ongoing oil and gas activities since some of the elderly have no capacity to involve themselves directly into the sector.
  • Christopher Asiimwe the male District Councilor for the Elderly Kikuube district said CNOOC should involve the communities in their development plans to enable the communities gauge their development strategies in the communities they work in.

He said villages have different problems to address as opposed to what CNOOC officials address and called for engagement meetings to identify what exactly the communities need.

Kikuube district is among the host districts of key oil and gas projects like the Kabaale International Airport, an oil refinery that is going to be constructed in Buhuka, the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP), among others thus need for practical involvement of all stakeholders at the district.

The sensitization of stakeholders in oil and gas value chain, upcoming infrastructure development and social/environmental safeguards meetings are facilitated by the Kitara Civil Society Organizations Network with support from CNOOC.

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