Niger Delta youths issue ultimatum to FG , Shell over oil spillage compensation
Perhaps, the relative peace enjoyed from the Niger Delta roil rich-region may soon be over , as tension returns following ultimatum by OgonibYouth Movement to Shell and the Federal Government here is the detail:
A fresh crisis seems to be brewing in the Niger Delta region following clamour by the youths for over delay in payment of compensation for oil spillage in various communities in the region on the years past.
This is noticed from the restive mood that the youths, on Thursday, displayed against Federal Government and the Anglo-Dutch energy giant, Shell, which they said was primarily involved in oil exploration thst cause the spillage in the Ogoni land.
The youths said they had already issued the warning that Shell is to pull out of Ogoni land for its failure to pay the agreed out-of-court settlement agreement.
They recalled that in January 2015, there was an understating betwern the oil giant and the representatives of the community, in which Shell agreed to pay them the sum of $70 million as compensation.
More than 15,500 Bodo people, a community mostly hit by the oil spillage saga, were to benefit from the payment.
Also the Fedesl Gvernment in June 2016, through the Acting Ptesidrnt (as the Vice President), Yemi Osinbajo formally launched the oil cleansing project, which the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) cemmended .
“Nothing is being done to show that both the government and the oil company are ready to tackle the environmental poulation that we have been subjected to in the past decades that oil was explored in Ogoniland,” stated Chief Livinus Kiebel, chairman of the Bodo council of chiefs.
It was learnt learnt that only $10 million of the initial $1 billion, which the government budgeted for the programme had so far been released.
A governing council , with the project coordinator, had been appointrd but without the needed funds for the work.
However, the youths of the area have threatened to deploy all legitimate means , including public demonstration to drive home their points.
The community has been abandoned to continue to bear the cost of the oil spillage, in which Shell had already taken responsibility for.
“The water we drink is still not fit for human consumption; our fishing ponds had since bern polluted beyond redemption .
“That we are still drinking the poisoned water and have remained jobless as we have lost our fishing ponds.
” it makes it imperative that we issue an ultimatum to all those directly or indirectly involved in rendering our land useless ,” said Friday Ibriseme, coordinator, Ogoni Youths Movement, (OYM).
But a spokesman of Shell, South South Zone, Peter Okoimo, stated that if there were any misunderstanding, the company knows what to do, adding that meetings with all stakeholders were still being held on regular basis these days to avert any tension.