Thursday, 21 May 2015

Ibeno youths protest over oil spill

Ibeno youths protest over oil spill

Youths in Ibeno Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom, on Tuesday paralysed the activities of Mobil Producing Nigeria (MPN), Unlimited Qua Iboe Terminal. 

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), reports that the protesters numbering over 2,000 including women sat down at the Lagos gate of the oil giant firm chatting sons and dancing while passer by looks on. 

The protesters said that until ExxonMobil do thorough clean up exercise from its community and its environs, they would not allow their staff to resume work.
NAN reports that May 19th is second day the protesters are protesting the recent oil spill that occurred in Mkpanak community, near the Ibeno beach, and spread to the neighbouring local government areas.

The protesters placed banner at the gate of the company with inscriptions, “Abasi Ulok Ulok Aye Aye’’, “Build the youth, build the nation’’.
“On behalf of the good people of Ibeno the most peaceful oil community in the Niger Delta Region’’.

“It is on record that ExxonMobil crude oil spills in our community on the following days”, “15th Dec. 2014, “28th Feb. 2015, 10th April 2015, 27th April 2015’’.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) also reports that there was heavy police presence at the company’s premises.

A spokesman of the youths, Mr Eratus Afia, said that they were protesting against a recent oil spill in their community from an Exxon Mobil facility.
“What we are asking ExxonMobil is simple, come and clean up the oil spill from our community so that our community will be free from hazards.

“Oil spill is dangerous to health. We don’t even have good water because our water has been polluted by oil spill,’’ he lamented.

“We the youth’s leaders in Ibeno took our time to write to ExxonMobil to come and clean up the environment, they refuse to acknowledged our letters.

According to him, the company said they should give them one week and they are going to do something about it and until now Mobil could not clean up the oil spill.
“All the crude oil that is going down the drain on daily basis, has affected our farm land. Here in Ibeno we can’t plant anything because the whole lands have been taken by oil spill,” Afia said.

The youth leaders decried that incessant oil spill had deprive the fishermen their occupation.

“Our aquatic life’s have gone we can’t plant and fish any more, and ExxonMobil have not being given us the employment slot they have been given us initially,’’ he said.

Our Correspondent recalls that the April 19 oil spill occurred in Mkpanak community, near the Ibeno beach, and spread to the neighbouring local government areas.

Lagos: Monday, May 18, 2015 - Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited (MPN), operator of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC)/MPN Joint Venture, confirms that a group staged a demonstration on May 18, 2015, at the Joint Venture’s Qua Iboe Terminal. 

The Joint Venture has been advised that the demonstration is related to a sighting of intermittent patches of an oil based substance along the shoreline of Ibeno beach east of the Qua Iboe Terminal on the evening of April 11, 2015. 

The substance was sampled, tested and confirmed to not be produced oil or liquid, not from production facilities, and not carried by water to the location.  It is not from any of the Joint Venture’s onshore or offshore facilities.   

Relevant community, government and regulatory agencies have been duly notified, and we are working with all parties to investigate the possible source.

 MPN restates its continued commitment to maintaining high safety, health and environmental standards in our operations and is committed to the well-being of our neighbouring communities.

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