GROUP EXPOSES HOW RSG, JULIUS BERGER ARE SHORTCHANGING RIVERS PEOPLE
…says Kogi, Akwa Ibom indigenes have 60% and 32% while Rivers has 3% job chances
by Peter Henry Dee
A civil society group known as the African Grassroots Empowerment Organization (AFRIGEO), has revealed how the Rivers State Government and a construction giant, Julius Berger Nigeria Limited have connived to rob Rivers indigenes of their rights to get job chances and contracts in the ongoing construction works in the state by the construction company.
President and Founder of AFRIGEO, Prince GOMENE NAMENE criticized Governor NYESOM WIKE of Rivers State and Julius Berger of being high handed against Rivers people.
In a media briefing in Port Harcourt, Prince GOMENE NAMENE said Rivers people have been short changed in the ongoing construction works in the state, carried out by Julius Berger.
He revealed that 60% of Kogi State indigenes are currently working with Julius Berger while Akwa-Ibom State has 32% allotment of job chances, adding that other states have 5% with the host State, Rivers having only 3% of job allotment.
He disclosed that the position of Chief Security Officer (CSO), which ought to be a Rivers chance has ironically been ceded to a non Rivers man, describing such as unfair.
He challenged the Rivers State Government led by Governor WIKE and Julius Berger to make the nominal role of employment list public, if they feel otherwise.
The Ogoni born activist further alleged that the Rivers State Government connived with Julius Berger to corner all the available attractive and juicy contracts: including iron-rod-contracts and labour contracts meant for Rivers indigenes to non-Rivers persons, leaving stakeholders in Rivers State impoverished.
He said the RSG and its collaborator, Julius Berger Nigeria Limited have breached the local content law on employment.
“The highest paying and most attractive contracts are equally ceded to non Rivers persons. These contracts are the ‘iron-rod-contract’ and the consequent labour.
“This is wrong and unacceptable. This breaches the local content law on employment. We therefore, demand that the locals should be empowered in their immediate localities”.
Prince GOMENE also accused the RSG of suppressing the rights of Rivers youths to carry out peaceful protests against the injustices meted on them.
He argued that no responsible government denies its citizens the right to peaceful protests, stressing that doing so is an abuse of civil right, as it goes against the United Nations Civil Right Charter.