The government of Ghana has tasked Ziol Company, a subsidiary company of Zoomlion Ghana Limited, to recruit the youth in communities where oil has been discovered in preparation for extraction of crude oil in the country next year, the GNA has reported.
Commercial production of oil is expected to begin in June 2010.
To facilitate the recruitment and training of the youth, a District Employment Taskforce (DELTA Force) has been inaugurated at Apam in the Central Region.
The Member of Parliament for Gomoa West, Francis Kojo Arthur said the youth, who would be recruited mainly along the coastal towns, are to be engaged in cleaning the beaches and in the restoration of the coastal vegetation. Others would also be trained to take care of oil spillage.
Speaking at the inauguration of the taskforce, Dr Nii Moi Thompson, an Economic Development expert and representative of the International Labour Organisation (ILO), said creating employment meant minimizing anti-social activities such as armed robbery, cyber crimes or “Sakawa”, rape and defilement.
Ghana found oil in commercial quantity in 2007. Since the development, there have been discussions about local participation and involvement in developing the sector. The communities where the exploration activities have been going on have seen an upsurge in population. Several businesses in the oil and gas industryare setting up in the area and some local businesses are also establishing themselves in the area. But more importantly, the issue of offering employment tolocal people has been talked about.
The country has also been warned to avoid the unfortunate circumstance of Nigeria with specific reference to the Niger Delta, where the bulk of the country’s oil wealth is generated, but locals live in abject poverty. This development has led to violence in the region with its attendant negative impacts on the country’s oil industry.
By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi