MOSOP tasks FG on monetary commitment to Ogoni cleanup

Ogoni oil spill

A grim picture of the impacts of oil pollution on Ogoni people was again painted last week as the Movement for the Survival of Ogoni People (MOSOP), tasked the Federal government to redeem its own monetary commitment to the cleanup of the area.

President of MOSOP, Legborsi Pyagbara told journalists in Port Harcourt, that the Federal Government’s contribution is not yet in the $10 million released for the exercise, disclosing that the money is from Shell.

He said: “HYPREP must immediately put in place a process that will address the implementation of emergency measures needed to deal with critical issues of water, health and infrastructure as a matter of priority”

He reiterated that the Ogonis cannot continue to drink poisoned water that is threatening its life and that of the future generations.

The MOSOP President also decried the current level of youth unemployment in the country especially in Ogoniland, stating that the alarming rate of joblessness in Ogoni was responsible for the current insecurity in the area where criminality and destruction of lives and properties have become the order of the day.
While decrying the continue delay in the Ogoni cleanup, Pyagbara expressed dismay that the 2017 budget did not even capture anything concrete about funding of Ogoni cleanup.

He urged the government and joint ventures partners to ensure that enough resources are available for the immediate implementation of the United Nations Environment report.

He said: “ Whilst we appreciate the federal Government’s efforts so far to implement the UNEP report, we are deeply concerned about the slow pace of the implementation of the report. We had expected the government to match its words with actions by showing a greater commitment to mobilising the needed resources.

“ The cleanup process needs adequate resources and the Federal government and the joint venture partners must make sure that happens seamlessly”

Pyagbara said, “In a related development, the Ogoni Community Development Network has expressed concern on the continuous exclusion of Ogoni civil society movements in discussions related to the implementation of the UNEP report.

A statement signed by the President of the group, Johnson Kuele accused HYPREP of organising a non-representative stakeholder meeting in Port Harcourt last week with the exclusion of active stakeholders who supposed to ask critical questions on the management of about $210 million already approved for HYPREP.

He said,  “ Over 80per cent of the participants were drawn from a particular political party with the exclusion of members of other political groups and civil society organizations including MOSOP, a situation which is already creating strong divisions in MOSOP and could lead to civil protest against HYPREP”.

Similarly, the Save Our Ogoni Project’ have also accused the Project Coordination of   HYPREP, Mr. Marvin Dekil, of bias in his selection of Ogoni youths for overseas training.

Speaking further, Pyagbara frowned at the Federal Governments’ neglect at the east west road especially, the Eleme/Akpajo/Onne axis.

He said, the level of neglect in the area shows why restructuring of the country is very important, saying, “ if we are in charge of our area, we cannot allow the road to remain in such deplorable state.”

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