Uche Cecil Izuora
Energy company, Shell, has inaugurated the second and final phase of its comprehensive health care projects for Oloibiri and other communities in Ogbia Local Government area of Bayelsa State.
“Corporate Social Responsibility means doing well. What you have done today means you’re doing well. You are impacting the lives of the communities, of people, and of government of the state. You have done so well today, and we commend you. You are investing in education and in social development in Ogbia to improve the quality of life of our people,” Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri said on Thursday while leading other state officials to open the state-of the-art facilities.
Speaking at the inauguration event, Managing Director, The Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited (SPDC) and Country Chair, Shell Companies in Nigeria, Mr. Osagie Okunbor, described the dual-phased suite of health projects in Oloibiri as a reinforcement of the commitment of the oil major to the health and wellbeing of its hosts and Nigerians as a whole.
Okunbor said, “The projects are to serve as a reference point for sustainable primary health care delivery, which is the foundation for the attainment of the Universal Health Coverage as prescribed by the World Health Organisation (WHO).”
According to him, “Oloibiri holds an important place because when the narration of Nigeria’s oil and gas journey is told, it will always be mentioned that here, in 1958, Shell Nigeria, made the first commercial find of hydrocarbons. Shell Companies in Nigeria, therefore, share a momentous tie with the Oloibiri community and it is our desire to leave impactful memories here.”
The phase two of the Shell Oloibiri health programme includes the Oloibiri Health Campus at Oloibiri Town; the Drug Distribution Centre at Emeyal II; a 400-metre Oloibiri access road to the health campus, and the Ogbia Safe Maternal and Infant Care Programme.”
Phase one of the programme was inaugurated in 2019 to provide universal health coverage for Oloibiri where Shell’s oil and gas exploration began in Nigeria over 60 years ago. The delivery of the projects was to fulfil Shell’s commitments in commemoration of Nigeria’s centenary held in 2014.
Phase one of the programme included a remodelled and fully equipped General Hospital in Kolo; fully equipped laboratories in the College of Health Technology, Otuogidi; and solar-powered water treatment facilities for the communities. As part of the programme, 100 indigenes of Ogbia, were also selected for the Special Shell LiveWIRE programme for economic empowerment.
The other Shell-sponsored centenary projects are the digital library in Port Harcourt and ultramodern health facilities in different locations in Delta State.