FOR A DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM FOR OGONI, NIGERIA THROUGH THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE OGONI DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY
This Proposal is submitted to the Central Committee also called the Steering Committee of the Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP), and the entire people of Ogoni comprising the six kingdom and two special units namely Eleme, Tai, Gokana. Babbe, Ken-Khana, Nyokhana, Ban-Ogoi Special Area and Bori National Territory.
This proposal is frantic effort by MOSOP to set forth a clear path and plan which when implemented will: (1) lead directly to the resolution of issues regarding the remediation, and restoration of oil spill areas in Ogoni; (2) provide for the future development of Ogoni, and (3) provide for the future economic security of the citizens and residents of Ogoni.
The Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP) having championed the struggles of the Ogoni people for a free, fair and just society that guarantees the fundamental rights of the Ogoni people considers this proposal a fair and equitable outline which will clear away the mistrust between the Ogoni people, the oil industry and the government and bring about critically needed restoration and development activities in Ogoni.
B. DEFINITION OF TERMS
For the purposes of this Proposal, the following words are defined as follows:
1. “Ogoni” refers to the six kingdom and two special areas of Ogoni including Eleme, Tai, Gokana, Babbe, Ken-Khana, Nyokhana, Ban-Ogoi and Bori.
2. “Ogoni People” refer to the citizens and residents of Ogoni and their ancestors;
3. “Restoration” refers to those activities undertaken for the cleanup and remediation of land and water areas impacted by oil spills in Ogoni and the compensation for livelihoods lost as a result of years of oil spills.
C. BENEFITS OF PROPOSAL IMPLEMENTATION
The Proposal for the Restoration and Development of Ogoni sets forth procedures which when implemented will greatly benefit the Ogoni people specifically, as well as Nigeria. Approval and implementation of the Proposal will accomplish the following:
- Establish a unified Development Authority which will represent the Ogoni People in discussions regarding the protection of the interests of the Ogoni people, the development of Ogoni and oil spill and environment cleanup in Ogoni;
- Establish an Authority composed of the Ogoni People which will be responsible for managing the development plan of Ogoni;
- Source and manage the funds for the development of Ogoni;
- Establish a Development Plan for Ogoni.
- Provide for substantial employment of the people of Ogoni.
- Ensure the fair and equitable treatment of the Ogoni People in the development of Ogoni;
- Insure that the Development Program is properly and fairly administered throughout all the Ogoni kingdoms and special areas;
- Provide for future oil exploration and extraction activities after proper and acceptable negotiations have been completed and the Restoration Program implemented, providing great benefit to the Ogoni people and Nigeria as a whole.
E. PRE-PROPOSAL PLANNING AND ORGANIZATION
The proposal is designed to create a mechanism for addressing and resolving problems experienced by the Ogoni People relating to oil and gas exploration and extraction in Ogoni. The Proposal sets forth the establishment of a central organization to oversee the design and implementation of the restoration and development of Ogoni. The Proposal calls for active participation of all Ogoni population and other critical stakeholders.
Prior to implementation of the Proposal, a consensus must be reached by the Executive Committee of MOSOP, the Central Committee of MOSOP, the Congress and the General Assembly of the Ogoni people. This will be required to fulfill the decision making process as stipulated by the constitution of the Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP).
F. PROPOSAL IMPLEMENTATION
1. ESTABLISHMENT OF OGONI DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY.
The first step in the implementation of this Proposal will be the establishment of the OGONI DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY.
The OGONI DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY will be a centralized organization of the Ogoni People being established by the Central Committee of MOSOP in pursuance of the core mandate of MOSOP as contained in the Ogoni Bill of Rights to address problems experienced because of oil spills and neglect, and will be the organization the Ogoni people established to resolve those problems, protect Ogoni interests, provide for direct input by the Ogoni People in matters relating to oils spill cleanup, restoration, and future development.
- PROPOSED COMPOSITION OF THE AUTHORITY;
MEMBERSHIP. The AUTHORIRY will be composed of 33 members, representative of the entire Ogoni population, as follows:
- Two members representing the National Youth Council of Ogoni People (NYCOP)
- Five members representing the Council of Ogoni Professionals (COP)
- Two members representing the Committee of Ogoni Leaders of Thought.
- Three members representing the Federation of Ogoni Women Association (FOWA).
- Two members representing the Ogoni Council of Churches
- One member representing the Ogoni Central Union
- Two members representing the Conference of Ogoni Traditional Rulers
- Two members representing the Nationaal Union of Ogoni Students (NUOS)
- Two members representing the Ogoni Students Union
- Three members representing the Ogoni Teachers Union
- Two executive committee members of MOSOP
B. TERMS OF MEMBERSHIP
- The terms of all members shall be four years.
- All members of the AUTHORIRY will be nominated and approved by the Central Committee of MOSOP.
- The Central Committee shall have powers to replace any member at any time. Where a replacement is made, the member shall serve to complete the tenure of the person replaced.
- The Central Committee shall have powers to dissolve the members of the Ogoni Development Authority with a simple majority of the members present at the Central Committee meeting.
- The Central Committee shall appoint the chairman and secretary respectively for the Ogoni Development Authority through a simple majority vote.
2. Powers, duties, and responsibilities of the OGONI DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY
The OGONI DEVELOPMENT AUTHORIRY shall have the duty and responsibility to:
- Conduct an assessment of Ogoni to determine their specific needs with regard to potable water, electricity, job creation, housing, healthcare facilities, schools, roads, telecommunications, security, ICT and technology development, industrialization and other critical infrastructure. This will enable the AUTHORIRY to set priorities regarding the implementation of projects.
- Serve as the official depository of the Ogoni people for funds dedicated by the Government of Nigeria, oil companies and appropriate development agencies and organizations for the Development of Ogoni and for Oil Spill and Environment Restoration;
- Enter into contracts as deemed necessary by the AUTHORIRY with businesses and individuals participating in the Development of Ogoni;
- Make appropriate disbursements to businesses and individuals contracting to participate in the Development of critical areas of Ogoni;
- File quarterly reports on activities undertaken by the OGONI DEVELOPMENT AUTHORIRY and present the reports to the monthly meeting of the Central (Steering) Committee of MOSOP,
The Ogoni Development Authority will not have the powers to begin negotiations with the Nigerian Government or any other relevant parties upon its formation. The ODA shall implement the development programs with the directives and approval of the Central Committee of MOSOP. Projects will be executed with funds available in an OGONI DEVELOPMENT TRUST with the approval of the Central Committee of MOSOP and in line with the development needs of Ogoni.
4. FUNDING AND FINANCING
When oil production in Ogoni begins, the Authority will receive 25 percent of the income generated and will be able to determine specific details of the Development Program. All revenues accruing to the Ogoni people will be deposited into an Ogoni Development Trust. The Ogoni Development Authority will also source and receive funding from donor organizations and agencies and commit the funds to the development needs of the Ogoni people.
5. ESTABLISHMENT OF DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM
The Central Committee of MOSOP will approve an Ogoni Development plan to be implemented by the AUTHORITY. The AUTHORIRY will prioritize its implementation plans and budgets based on the approval of the MOSOP Central Committee.
7. RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE OGONI DEVELOPMENT AUTHORIRY AND THE RIVER STATE GOVERNMENT
The powers, duties, and responsibilities of OGONI DEVELOPMENT AUTHORIRY to the citizens of Ogoni are ancillary to and do not replace the powers, duties, and responsibilities of the Rivers State Government with respect to the citizens of the Local Government Areas of Ogoni. The activities of the AUTHORIRY will greatly benefit the other Local Government Areas in River State and the River State Government. The increased employment will generate increased income to all of River State in many ways.
9. RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE OGONI DEVELOPMENT AUTHORIRY AND THE NIGERIAN GOVERNMENT
The exact nature of the relationship between the Ogoni Development Authority and the Nigerian Government will not be fully determined until negotiations have begun. The negotiation proposals of the OGONI DEVELOPMENT AUTHORIRY provide for direct participation of the Ogoni People in the development of Ogoni. This will reduce and possibly eliminate the responsibility of the Government for developmental interventions in Ogoni. The negotiating proposals anticipate the resumption of oil production in Ogoniland in the foreseeable future. The proposals provide for an equitable distribution of future oil revenues, which will greatly benefit Nigeria and the Ogoni people.
The establishment of the Ogoni Development Authority will mark a new day for the Ogoni People. The joint approach on behalf of all Ogoni People establishes a strong platform from which to move forward and sends a signal that the Ogoni people are willing to and desire to become self sufficient while at the same time operating within the whole and increasing the worldwide statute of Nigeria as one of the world’s largest and most reliable oil producing nations.. Among other things, the establishment of the Authority and implementation will result in;
---the development of Ogoni after proper negotiations with the Nigerian Government and private sector investors;
---increase amount of potable water available
---Ensure equitable distribution of oil revenues to Ogoni;
---provide for compensation of Ogoni residents for livelihood losses due to oil spills;
---Provide for salaried compensation for all Paramount Chiefs and Other Chiefs in
Ogoni for their contributions to the establishment and success of the work of the Authority.
MOSOP envisions the contents of this proposal as a roadmap to reconciliation and prosperity for Ogoni and the Ogoni People. By moving jointly ahead with a clear agenda, the previous inability to determine the parameters of the restoration effort can be resolved and cleanup and restoration be a continual program with defined parameters
September 27, 2020.