Abdelbagi warns oil companies, ministries against overlooking resolutions

The Vice President for Service Cluster Hussein Abdelbagi called for the implementation of the resolutions of the meeting on the plight of oil-producing areas to help provide social services for the people.

Abdelbagi, who spoke during the closure of the three-day high-level meeting, urged the concerned ministries and oil companies to ensure they implement the resolutions without compromise.

“I direct this meeting to remind the operating companies to abide by their corporate responsibilities,” he said.

The vice president said the oil deposit must be managed well because if the companies are not adhering to the agreed terms, the government will not hesitate to mete the punishments.

“The corporate responsibilities of the companies should always be a norm of the operating companies to provide social services to the oil producing states and communities.”

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“There is need to recommend measures to manage the risk of harm to human health and the environment; however, all these must be done in compliance with the existing laws.”

To him, all the existing frameworks must be reviewed to address all the issues related to the affected areas.

The meeting resolved that the ministries of petroleum, health and environment, and forestry will tackle the issue of environmental pollution by adhering strictly to established safety environmental standards and building functional health facilities in oil producing areas. This is to deal with health challenges that inherently arise from the adverse effects of oil production.

It resolved that for transparency and accountability purposes, the petroleum ministry should work in tandem with oil producing areas by involving them at every step: from production to sale, so that beneficiaries are adequately informed about the exact amount of production and allocations due to them. He said this will answer the questions about the payment of the five per cent oil revenue share.

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It also resolved that the Government of the Republic of South Sudan (GRSS) and the Council of States (CS) specifically should consider Abyei in every practical respect as an oil-producing area, just in the same way that they consider other oil producing Areas, and include it in their programme pertaining to oil producing Areas in South Sudan.

The government also should impose strict legal penalties on oil-polluting companies that wilfully or recklessly breach safety environmental standards and policies. All the partners should build a state-of-the-art hospital in the counties of oil-producing areas and provide them with modern medical equipment as well as deploy competent medical personnel to provide medical care to local communities around the clock among other resolutions.

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