HYPREP Embarking on Vain Blackmail of Ogoni Youths – MOSOP

The Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP) has accused the Hydrocarbon Pollution Remediation Project (HYPREP) of engaging in vain propaganda and blackmail against Ogoni youths. President of MOSOP, Fegalo Nsuke who made the assertion in Abuja yesterday said HYPREP was attempting to blackmail Ogoni youths as those responsible for oil theft in the region..

Nsuke was responding to HYPREP’s claim that the Ogoni cleanup will address oil theft issues and said HYPREP was attempting to blackmail Ogoni youths as oil thieves. He described HYPREP’s claim as illogical and irrational noting that attempting to accuse and blame the Ogoni people for oil theft in the Niger Delta was to exonerate Shell from the massive pollution on Ogoni soil. He accused HYPREP of betrayal in an attempt to impress and protect its funding sources.  He said HYPREP was sacrificing the Ogoni people for money and trying to absolve Shell from the massive pollution in the Delta and to put the blame on jobless youths.

While Nsuke admitted that there are cases of sabotage leading to some instances of environmental pollution, he said the Ogoni people in their rural settings are mainly concerned about food to eat and do not have the technical capacities to drill oil or sabotage oil pipelines.

“No one can expect our local people to be able to sabotage pipelines and refine the crude by any means. That is a highly technical endeavour which only the highly knowledgeable can undertake”

Nsuke noted that oil production has not occurred in Ogoni in the past 31 years and so oil theft hasn’t been a big problem recently. He therefore questioned HYPREP’s claims noting that what Ogoni needs now as a matter of emergency is clean water and economic development.

“Oil theft is not a major problem within the Ogoni region now because oil production has not occured in Ogoni in the past 31 years and there is little to do in terms of oil theft within the Ogoni region. The only challenge are the frequent pipe blowouts due to poor maintenance and for the protection of distribution pipelines which pass through Ogoni”

“The Ogoni region will account for less than one percent of oil spill cases in Nigeria today based on the cases of spills we have had recently. So even if we have to take HYPREP seriously, how does a one percent reduction in oil theft cases amount to something significant to celebrate when we want the menace to be completely eliminated.”

Nsuke called on HYPREP to face its job of cleaning decades of pollution in Ogoni and to implement its 2017 decision to embark on an integrated water project for Ogoni so as to put an end to the poison called water which is killing the people.

“HYPREP is supposed to be primarily concerned with cleanup of oil pollution. It should focus on that and not try to blame innocent Ogoni youths who are grappling with poor living conditions” Nsuke said.

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