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Delta Community indicts Army, NDPC, others in oil pollution cover up
Disquiet is raging currently in lead oil producing community in Burutu Council Area of Delta State, Yeye Community over an oil spill at Ekeremo Manifold in the area.
A statement signed by Pastor Philip Fianka and Prince Onaro, Chairman and Secretary respectively, showed that the Nigerian Army had since taken over the site of incident, preventing community stakeholders from gaining access to assess the level of damage.
Accordingly, Yeye youths have alleged that the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC), and her partners, Nestoil/NECONDE, had last week employed the services of men of the Nigerian Army to harass people of the community away from the area, to cover up a recent oil spill around the community.
While calling on the federal, state governments and Delta State and Burutu Council Area to intervene in the matter and prevail on the oil companies to conduct a Joint Investigation Visit, JIV, and give the host community recognition and rights to it, they warned that all effort should be made to avoid the degeneration of the crisis.
Yeye Community averred in the statement that “Our attention has been drawn to the constant military harassments faced by particularly members of Yeye community over the spill that occurred at the Ekeremo manifold precisely on the 1st of June 2017”.
“Following the Ekeremo manifold spill on Thursday last week, an oil manifold jointly operated by the Nigeria Petroleum Development Company (NPDC) and Nestoil/NECONDE, the owners perfected plans of chasing Yeye, the host community to the facility out, using the military with a view to preventing it from being treated as an affected community.
“The military was forcefully used to prevent movements of speed boats as they quickly used the opportunity to repair the leaked point and poured chemicals to sink the spilled crude without even a Joint Investigation, JIV with the affected communities with has been the case with other spills. The military must not continue to be intimidating tools in the hands of these multinational oil companies operating in our waterways.
“It will be very crucial to point out that the oppressive gimmicks employed by these companies operating the manifold will not see the light of the day as we will fight with the last drop of our blood until we are given the desired treatment as an impacted community.
“For record purposes, let us make this very clear that Yeye community is not just an impacted community, it should be recognized as a principal stakeholder on that asset; the Ekeremo manifold and companies involved should not make any attempt to take any community to the spill site as they are currently proposing to go there with Odidi community and their gun boats.
“We are once again using this medium to call on the NPDC and Nest Oil /NECONDE to quickly set up a JIV and begin to take responsibility for the spill.