By Patrick ODEY, Uyo The Federal Government has said that it has brokered an investment worth at least $7 Billion to be deployed in Akwa Ibom. Minister of State for Petroleum Resources Dr Ibe Kachukwu made this known last week in Uyo during a town hall meeting organised by the Federal Ministry of Information for states in the South South zone to appraise the performance of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration. The investments according to Kachukwu would be for the establishment of a power plant and building of a methanol industry in partnership with ExxonMobil and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC. “Let me say that some of the biggest investments that are coming into petroleum sector are to Akwa Ibom, unknown to you. Right now, we are finalizing the IPP project with Mobil which will produce 500 mega wax of power, we are finalizing the gas pipeline which will enable us take gas from production field back to those. “And at the back of that a major investor is also coming in working with NNPC to try and develop some facilities including a methanol plant. The total value of this investment is over $7bn that is almost in the kitty, it has been approved by the president, and it’s been worked in terms of the contracting aspect. So there are major investments coming your way. “This is the fact of the peace you enjoy here, the fact of the fertility of this area to the reception of people for investment in the oil sector and the fact that Mobil that has been here for many years has continued to impact on the people” the Minister explained. In address at the occasion, the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Mr Usani Usani, said that the Ministry had empowered 130 youths with one million naira each to start business of their choice. Usani said that the ministry had built housing estates in the nine states of the Niger Delta region but regretted that those estates were yet to be occupied. He said that the fourth phase of the East-West road was not abandoned and assured that the fifth phase from Oron to Calabar would commence soon and called on the governors in the region to partner with the ministry in the attempt to develop the region holistically. Also in her presentation, the Minister of Environment, Mrs Amina Mohammed, emphasized the need to protect the environment by guarding against pollution. Mohammed said that the entire Niger Delta region would be cleaned up after the Ogoni clean-up exercise and advised the investors in the region to do their businesses in environmentally friendly manner to avoid environmental degradation In an address Governor Udom Emmanuel called on the Federal Government to dialogue with the Niger Delta Avengers to ensure peace and development in the region. Emmanuel noted the economy of the country had been brutalized by the violence experienced in the Niger Delta region recently. “Government must do all it can to dialogue with Niger Delta Militants as our economy is based on resources accruing from this region. “Government must look into the underlining issues of the region, we must dialogue with the stakeholders from the region to resolve these problems once and for all”, Emmanuel said. He further urged the Federal Government to revive the amnesty programme with a view to accommodating more persons in the programme and opined that abandoning the programme would not be the best option now for the people. The governor commended the Federal Government for ensuring that Maritime Academy of Nigeria, MAN, Oron was made a degree awarding institution but called on the National Assembly to expedite action in giving legal backing to the university status of the institution.