A non-Governmental Organisation – Health of Mother Earth Foundation (HOMEF) – has urged the Federal Government to renege plan to move the Hydrocarbon Pollution Restoration Project (HYPREP) from Ministry of Environment to the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs.
HOMEF’s reaction follows an announcement reportedly made by the Minister of Transportation, Muázu Jaji Sambo in Abuja
where he reportedly stated that HYPREP is a purely Niger Delta affair hence the government has concluded plan to transfer it to the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs because transferring the agency to the ministry would quicken the pace of the clean-up in the region.
INFO DAILY reports that Hydrocarbon Pollution Restoration Project (HYPREP) was established under the Federal Ministry of Petroleum of Nigeria in 2012 following a recommendation of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) report
on the assessment of the Ogoni environment in 2011.
A statement by Nnimmo Bassey, Director, HOMEF, which was made available to INFO DAILY by Kome Odhomor Media/Communication Lead of the organisation argued that the planned move appears to stem from a major misconception that HYPREP is a solely Niger Delta affair.
“This is far from being accurate. We have hydrocarbon pollution in other areas of Nigeria outside the Niger Delta, including around Kaduna refinery, and at Atlas Cove, Badagary and other places in Lagos. It is also obvious that with oil extraction activities
in Lagos waters and Dangote’s refinery being built at Lekki, hydrocarbon pollution will soon become the norm in Lagos. That is not Niger Delta.
“Moreover, with plans to invest 30% of the profits of NNPC Ltd in prospecting for petroleum resources in frontier basins, the scope of pollution will expand. That will not be in the Niger Delta. Besides the fact that moving HYPREP to the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs unnecessarily limits its scope, it also blindsides the essential backstopping that agencies such as National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA) seamlessly provide to the agency.
“If the move is allowed to stand there will be an avoidable duplication of personnel
as the new ministry grapples with the in-house expertise required for
the extremely specialized assignments of the agency.If such a move is allowed to stand there is a real risk of further slowing down the clean-up of Ogoniland or completely scuttling the process.
“We do not need the confusion and wastage that will be created by this planned move of HYPREP to the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs,” Bassey said.
He continued: “Considering the ecological crisis in the Niger Delta and across Nigeria, we expect the FG to order an urgent
commencement of environmental audit of the nation and ensuring that all polluters – the oil companies, including NNPC Ltd – pay for the clean-up of the entire Niger Delta and other areas afflicted with hydrocarbon
Bassey added that the planned move is a calculated distraction at a time when international oil companies are making moves to divest from onshore oil fields with undeclared but real intention
of avoiding responsibility for historical and current environmental
He reiterated that hydrocarbon pollution is not a solely Niger Delta
affair and should not be treated as that.
“We also believe that such a
move would overburden the Ministry of Niger Delta Affair and that HYPREP may end up as another opaque agency like the Niger Detta Development
Commission (NDDC), to the detriment of the people and the environment,” he added.
2023: Don’t Vote For Killers, Jonathan Warns Nigerians
Former president, Goodluck Jonathan, has warned Nigerians not to vote for those he described as “killers” during the 2023 election.
Jonathan stated this on Sunday in Uyo during a special interdenominational service to celebrate the 35th anniversary of the creation of Akwa Ibom State.
READ ALSO: 2023: Jonathan Campaigns Against Violence
“In 2023, you must not make the mistake to vote killers.
“Those who will carry knives, guns, and all kinds of gadgets to go and kill people because of politics, are the enemies of society.
“If you kill to become a leader, you will continue to kill to remain a leader.
“The people will continue to suffer. Make sure that from the House of Assembly to the House of Representatives to Senate to governor, you vote for the right people in Akwa Ibom State,” Jonathan said.
$23m Abacha Loot: Group Drags Buhari, Malami To Court Over Nigeria’s Agreement With US
Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has sued President Muhammadu Buhari over the agreement between Nigeria and the United States for the repatriated $23 million stolen by Sani Abacha.
Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN) is a respondent in the suit.
The agreement signed in August followed the $311 million Abacha loot returned by America in 2020.
In suit FHC/ABJ/CS/1700/2022 filed at the Federal High Court, Abuja, SERAP is asking the court to direct the President and Malami to make the details public.
The body wants to know the mechanisms put in place to ensure that the repatriated funds are not mismanaged, diverted or re-stolen.
SERAP noted that the repatriated $23 million is vulnerable to mismanagement as a substantial part of the estimated $5 billion returned Abacha loot since 1999 remains unaccounted for.
The suit filed by Kolawole Oluwadare and Atinuke Adejuyigbe relies on the Nigerian Constitution, the Freedom of Information Act, and the country’s international obligations.
The lawyers said Nigerians look forward to the court’s favourable judgement as they are entitled to information about the use of public funds.
No date has been fixed for the hearing of the suit which was instituted on Friday.
Delta Community Presents Akanigboro III To Chief Priests Of Ijaw Kingdoms’ Gods
Heir to the traditional stool of Akanigboro, King John Falabu Court, Akanigboro III, a priestly stool of ancient Mein Dynasty, has presented himself to the chief priests of the gods in Mein kingdoms.
Akanigboro III, addressing the chief priests at Ezebiri in Bomadi Local Government Area of Delta State, who came from the various Mein kingdoms, including from Mein ancestral home of Ogobiri in Bayelsa State and various Mein Kingdoms in Delta State, said he sought to present himself to them to inform them of his ascension to the ancient stool after much hesitations and refusal to the wish of his ancestors.
The meeting, which started with prayers to God in recognition of His supremacy over all creatures, featured questions, answers and advice.
Responding to questions of scrutiny from the chief priests, Akanigboro III, who went into historical lane, said: “The Akanigboro stool is a priestly stool and original kingship stool of Mein, progenitor of Mein clan, who was the first on the stool, being Akanigboro I.
“When Mein passed on, his son, Akan, ascended the stool and was Akanigboro II.
“When Akan passed on, there was a development that stalled the ascension process of a new ruler on the stool, which situation lingered for centuries with the kingdom in disarray without a ruler.
“It was this situation that led the children of Mein to leave our ancestral home, Ogobiri, in the present-day Bayelsa State, and migrated down to the present location called Western Ijaw, where they founded communities and kingdoms. More so, it was that same development that led the heir to the stool to migrate to the present location, Kpakiama and which history is known by all Mein descendants.
“Now, when I was growing up, I began to receive messages from the ancestors in my dreams that I’m the chosen one to ascend the Akanigboro stool, being a descendant of Ogubo, but I did not heed to the dreams.
“But, as time went on, seers from various places started telling me that I’m the chosen one to ascend the stool.
“With all these signs, I was hesitant until it got to a point I was disturbed by the ancestors which forced me to present issues, first to my family members, then to the people of Ogubo-ebede quarters who, in turn, presented me to Kpakiama urban community that I’m the chosen one and that I’m ready to ascend the stool of Akanigboro.
“However, the leadership and people of Kpakiama urban community received the news with joy and prayers to bring alive the ancient stool of their progenitor with the assurance that they’re ready to do the needful to ensure the Akanigboro stool takes its rightful place once again.
“The essence of calling you to converge here is to formally inform you that a chosen heir has ascended the ancient stool of Akanigboro. I was supposed to visit all communities in various Mein Kingdoms to inform you, but to make it easier, I opted to call all of you to Ezebiri. More so, I have earlier visited our ancestral home, Ogobiri, before this gathering here”.
In their response, the priests of the gods in Mein kingdoms, speaking through the chief priest, Mirror of the gods, Ezebiri, Chief Godwin Oroupade, thanked him for informing them and said that the Akanigboro stool rules over only three communities in Mein Clan, stressing they had no roles to play in his priestly stool since he’s not ruling over Mein Kingdoms.
Oroupade, who is the Eseduo of Kerebiri-Mein kingdom and Chairman, Priests of the gods in Mein kingdoms, said: “We have heard you. The Akanigboro stool is well-known but it’s not ruling over all Mein Kingdoms. “Therefore, we’ve no part to play in either confirming or accepting you.
“We, after our deliberations, have resolved to inform you that your stool is not ruling over Mein Kingdoms but it’s ruling over the children of Akan who found three communities, including Kpakiama, Bomadi and Bilabiri.
“So, we advise you to go and consult with your people, and if they accept you and your coronation is made ready, we, chief priests of the gods of Mein Kingdoms will come and celebrate with you.
“Again, I want to emphatically state here that no chief priest is having dominion or rulership over another in Mein Kingdoms.
“We’ve just formed an association where I’m the Chairman and I’m never a superior to any other chief priest, nobody is superior to anybody. We’re all chief priests in our various areas of abode and never a subject to anyone.
“We threw so many questions at you because of the misinformation about this gathering, as some people alleged that we’re preparing to install you in this gathering, which is unfounded because we’re no part of the Akanigboro stool, hence, we don’t have the powers to do so.
“So, go and consult with the people of Kpakiama, Bomadi and Bilabiri on the way forward for your stool”.
However, Akanigboro III thanked them for the warm reception and advice and promised to speak with his people for the successful resuscitation of the ancient stool.
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