FG begins contaminated soil centre in Rivers State

Cleanup exercise in Ogoniland PHOTO: GOOGLE

There was a sudden change of gear last week, which saw the Federal Government setting up an Integrated Contaminated Soil Management Centre, in Bori, Rivers State.

The centre, which is located at the Rivers states’ School to Farm site in Bori, marks further steps taken by the federal government towards the implementation of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) report on Ogoniland.

The minister of Environment, Mrs. Amina Mohammed, performed the ground breaking of the project, accompanied by the minister of State for the environment, Ibrahim Jibrin, the director general of National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency, Peter Idabor, the managing director of Shell Petroleum Development Company, Osagie Okunbor among others.

She explained that the clean up project is not only for Ogoni, but also for the rest of Niger Delta and President Muhammadu Buhari, decision to prioritise the implementation of the UNEP report was in recognition of the fight and struggle of injustice, which the Ogoni People championed over the year.

She observed that there are many people who have benefited from the injustice and misery in Ogoni land, and effort must be galvanised to prevent them from profiteering at the expense of the generality of the people.

The minister warned that President Buhari’s policy on diversification of the Niger Delta economy would be practically impossible to achieve, if the spate of environmental pollution in the region continues.

On his part, the Rivers State governor, Nyesom Wike, cautioned that the clean up of Ogoni must not be driven by parochial partisan interest.

Wike who was represented by the secretary to the State government, Kenneth Kobani, lauded the commitment of the federal government to the implementation of the UNEP report.

He noted that a clean environment is an inalienable right of every citizen, and will continue to support all genuine and honest efforts to realise the clean up of Ogoni.

The president for the Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People, Legborsi Pyagbara, urged donors to ensure that money is readily available for the project.

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