The Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) has teamed up with the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) to explore avenues for massive empowerment of the youths of the oil region.

The two mega organisations in the Niger Delta have thus endorsed a deal expected to empower the people of the oil region.

Recently, the managements of both the NDDC and the NLNG signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to streamline a partnership that may give the gas giant a bigger window of influence in how the youths are empowered.

In a statement issued by the media units of both organizations, the mega organisations said they intend to maximise impact of development in the Niger Delta.

They also talked about the objective of the MoU being to leverage what they called ‘shared aspirations’. They are to collaborate on diverse fronts in the delivery of sustainable development projects in the region.

At a brief signing ceremony at NLNG’s Corporate Head Office, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of NLNG, Dr Philip Mshelbila, and NDDC’s Managing Director, Dr Samuel Ogbuku, signed the MoU where both agreed to collaborate and partner to empower communities in the region.

They also said the MoU is to promote local content and capacity development, and work with stakeholders along the value chain to deliver sustainable development projects effectively.

As noted in the statement jointly issued by media units of both organisations, the MoU would also provide a framework to maximise the impact of NLNG’s contributions to NDDC. The statement said this would be through effective delivery of development projects in the Niger Delta in an objective, judicious, transparent, sustainable, auditable manner, and with due regards to accountability and global best practice.

The NLNG CEO, Dr Mshelbila, in his remarks, stated that through the partnership with NDDC, the NLNG aspires to set a precedent for how such collaborations can drive positive change in the Niger Delta region.

He said NLNG’s goal was to replicate the success of its projects and initiatives across the Niger Delta, working closely with NDDC to maximise the impact of collective efforts.

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He said the partnership would draw strength in their commitment which he said was deeply rooted in their core values and principles. These values are known to be about transparency and strict execution of projects. These seem to be values that may have eluded the NDDC over the years until the coming of Dr Ogbuku.

The present NDDC boss who was appointed by Muhammadu Buhari and re-endorsed by Bola Ahmed Tinubu, is seen to have pursued objectives probably outlined in the forensic audit, anchored on a new demand for transparency and global best practices. Most IOCs and the likes of the NLNG may be pleased with both the outline and the apparent determination to ensure these were implemented like never before.

The NDDC CEO thus assured the NLNG that the Commission is driven to continuously explore innovative avenues to make a meaningful impact on the lives of those they serve. “Our partnership with NDDC is evidence of this commitment.”

He went on: “Our dedication to the sustainable development of our host communities in health, education, economic development, and infrastructural development remains unwavering.”

Dr Ogbuku stated that the pact demonstrated unity towards sustainable development and progress in Nigeria. He noted that the MoU heralds a new era of collaboration for the betterment of the Niger Delta region and the nation.

He said: “While the NDDC and NLNG each has unique missions, their common goals emphasise sustainable development, socio-economic empowerment, local content promotion, capacity building, and stakeholder collaboration.”

He said this alliance represents a pivotal moment in Nigeria’s journey towards progress and prosperity. “It is a testament to the power of unified action in addressing the complex challenges faced by the Niger Delta region and the nation. The NDDC and NLNG are poised to create a more prosperous, inclusive, and sustainable future for Nigeria and its people.

“NLNG is recognised as a significant player in the global LNG industry, committed to conducting its operations with environmental responsibility and contributing to monetising Nigeria’s invaluable natural resources.”

Similarly, he stated, the NDDC is committed to promoting sustainable development within the Niger Delta, focusing on the delicate balance between economic growth, environmental stewardship, and the well-being of local communities.