The Imo State Government said it has discovered crude oil in some local government areas and urged the Federal Government to inspect the sites for possible exploration.
The Managing Director of the Imo State Oil Producing Area Development Commission, Dr. Henry Okoro, revealed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Owerri, the Imo State capital, on Friday.
Okoro said the areas are Oru East and West, Ngor-Opkala and Obowo Local Government Areas.
He said if the oil discovered was utilised, it would afford the state an opportunity of becoming a front runner among the oil producing states in the country.
He said: “We have enough raw materials here in Imo, which is capable of increasing the Internally Generated Revenue of the nation.
“The Federal Government should come now and inspect these areas for possible exploration, because I know that a lot of oil companies will want to invest.”
The managing director said the commission had no powers to begin exploration in the areas and stressed the need for the Federal Government to act fast.
Imo State is one of the oil producing states in the country, with oil being drilled from Ohaji/Egbema and Oguta Local Government Areas.
Okoro said that the recent discovery would also fast track Federal Government’s presence as well as boost development of the state.
He also noted that about 3,000 youths from the state had been empowered through the Youth Empowerment Trust Fund, an initiative of the state government.
According to him, ISOPADEC has intensified plans to partner with some American experts to train youths on mechanised farming system.
Okoro promised that the commission would continue to roll out empowerment programmes both for the youth and women in the state.
He said the commission had also commenced the construction of an International Marine University, adding that it would soon be completed.
This, the managing director said, would go a long way in providing education for the youth in the area.