The Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP), has berated what it called "unprofessional and corrupt" clean-up exercise of Ogoni land by the federal government. MOSOP said the fundamental issues as recommended by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) before the commencement of the exercise were not followed.
While accusing the governing council of Hydro-Carbon Pollution Restoration Project (HYPREP), the firm handling the clean-up of corruption and fraudulent practices, the group noted that the construction of a centre of excellence and integrated contaminated soil management centre, provision of potable water in communities, establishment of health registry and provision of alternative livelihood as parts of the recommendations were jettisoned.
While faulting the remediation method employed by the Hydrocarbon Pollution Remediation Programme as recommended by the UNEP report, MOSOP called for the immediate dissolution of the agency’s governing council and demanded a probe into HYPREP’s activities.
Speaking with SaharaReporters on the clean-up of Ogoni, the President of MOSOP, Fegalo Nsuke, said, "The federal government's clean-up of Ogoni land fell short of the recommendations made by UNEP that there should be an alternative source of potable drinking water among others.
"But all the recommendations were not followed and as I talk to you today, in Gokana land, the firm was not allowed into the area to carry out the exercise because of failure to adhere strictly to the recommendations. As a people, we have lost total confidence in what is happening concerning the clean-up of the land following the corrupt and sharp practices by the firm."
He said further, "Instead of these contracting firms to use the monies they have been paid for the purpose of which it was meant, the monies were diverted and used to prosecute the 2019 general elections. So as far as we are concerned, the Ogoni clean-up exercise has complicated the problems of our people rather than solving them.
"We can't say what they are doing. Truly speaking, we do not have credible confidence in the whole process and we have called for the dissolution of the programme. There's a serious compromise in all the activities and the composition of the governing council and we have called for a new council. Nothing is going on now. Everything is shrouded in secrecy and we don't know what is going on right now."
Nsuke added that HYPREP had failed to fulfil its mandate.
“It is no longer news that HYPREP, is the agency established as it were specifically for Ogoni clean-up pursuant to the UNEP recommendations, part of which was to carry out emergency measures like the construction of a centre of excellence and integrated contaminated soil management centre, provision of potable water in communities, establishment of health registry and provision of alternative livelihood for those involved in artisan refining and we talk nothing, I repeat, has been done," the MOSOP leader claimed.