Speaking in Abuja recently, the Acting Executive Director of the centre, Mr. Monday Osasah, said achieving a healthy and sustainable environment in the Niger Delta is a ruse if the current state of affairs with the clean-up exercise and emergency measures in Ogoniland is anything to go by.
According to him, following the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) report and the subsequent flag-off of the clean-up of the Niger Delta on 2 June 2016, the lull surrounding the exercise has now become very worrisome.
He however commended the Federal Government for putting in place preliminary processes which include scoping and delineation, advertisement and pre-qualification of 140 companies to do remediation, carry out health impact studies and provide potable water for impacted Ogoni communities in accordance with the procurement law of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“And just recently, the approval of the escrow account by the Vice President, we feel that this level of work after over two years of flag off is not in any way impressive but points to slothfulness,” Osasah said.
He said, “With regards to the clean-up exercise, there are indications that the remediation of polluted sites would begin in October 2018. However, there are no plans for the management of waste that would be generated during the process.
“Stakeholders have expressed concerns over the likelihood of digging and dumping waste on erstwhile clean sites.”