Journalist Task FG on Ogoni Cleanup

The Federal Government has been urged to expedite the ongoing clean-up of Ogoniland to address the perennial water crisis and several other environmental disasters that have plagued the area following decades of crude oil exploration there.

An international Journalist and Researcher on Gender, Politics and Conflict, Mercy Ette made the call at the presentation of the Minority Rights Group International annual report on global water Crisis.

The report was championed by contributors from different parts of the world who based their investigations on some selected nations including Nigeria, Australia, China and Finland.

Ogoniland in Niger Delta, South South of Nigeria was one of those spotlighted with International Journalist and Researcher, Mercy Ette as the contributor.

Ette stressed the need for the through cleanup of the area and timely execution of the project, saying that governments needed to remind the company involved to fulfill agreement on a total mop up.

She reiterated that based on local and international assessment reports including that by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), between 2009 and 2011, decades of oil exploration in Ogoniland have left the area heavily polluted, with serious health and socioeconomic consequences on the people of the area.

Other speakers from Australia, China and Finland, as well as the Commissioning Editor at Minority Rights Group, Nicolas Salazar Sutil, all pointed out that for many minorities and indigenous people, water crisis was an existential threat and called for water justice.

 To effectively address the problem, they said the authorities must prioritise the interests of the people and carry them along in decision making including planning and Implementation.

[Radio Nigeria]

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