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Petroleum Hub: Compensation will be paid to affected Nzema communities – CEO

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The CEO of the Petroleum Hub Development Corporation, Charles Owusu, has assured that compensation will be paid to the Nzema communities impacted by the Petroleum Hub Project.

The payment will be made to farmers, landowners, and communities in the four affected areas of Nyamenle Kwame Ellowule, Bokakole Nkwanta, Asempaye, and Old Kabenla Suazo.

The affected communities are demanding a downward renegotiation of the 20,000-acre acquired land for the Petroleum Development Hub project which seeks to create an estimated 780,000 employment in the Jomoro Enclave in the Western region and beyond.

In a move to transform Ghana’s energy sector, the Government of Ghana, on June 18, 2024, signed a US$12 billion agreement with TCP-UIC Consortium which comprises Touchstone Capital Group Holdings Ltd., UIC Energy Ghana Ltd., China Wuhan Engineering Co. Ltd., and China Construction Third Engineering Bureau Co. Ltd for the development of the first phase of the Petroleum Hub project in the Jomoro Municipal Area in the Western Region.

In an interview with Bernard Avle on The Point of View on Channel One TV, Charles Owusu assured that the concerns of the affected communities have been duly addressed, and compensation will be paid promptly before the construction of the Petroleum Hub Project commences.

He reiterated the company’s commitment to fair compensation, ensuring that the affected communities are adequately supported before the project breaks ground.

“Yes…Sometimes it’s hearsay. Ghana Gas is just at their next door at Atuabo, we haven’t heard any of such things. We’re in this country when you’re doing a major project, such things come up.

“We have met and explained things to them. Compensation will soon [be paid]. Because of the government’s commitments, the cabinet has directed the Ministry of Finance, and they are working on it. And very soon, we will start paying, because we have to pay before we start the construction,” he assured.

He confirmed that they have thoroughly engaged with the affected community members, ensuring that their concerns and issues have been heard and addressed and that a mutually beneficial agreement has been reached.

“Everything is being done, we’re engaging them. We have engaged them to the extent that they told us they don’t want to see our faces again, we have to come and start work… I think it’s more about understanding, and respect for one another. And I think they have done well.”

This project aims at positioning Ghana as the destination for energy trading in the West Africa sub-region.

The agreement is a critical step towards the President’s vision of Ghana becoming a regional hub for petroleum refining, storage, and distribution.

The Petroleum Hub project is expected to accelerate the growth of Ghana’s petroleum downstream sub-sector and make it a major player in the economy, creating jobs, attracting foreign direct investment, and enhancing energy security.

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