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Delta community issues 60-day ultimatum over pollution, others

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Group denies plans to shut down flow stations in Urhobo land
The Unoghovo Community in Ogharefe-Oghara, Delta State has issued a 60-day ultimatum to Pan Ocean Oil Corporation Nigeria Limited over what it described as gross environmental pollution and degradation of farmlands.

The community said after the 60 days lapse, they would stop the firm and its officials from passing through their land to their flow station at Ovadje, a neighbouring community.

Special Adviser to the community, Clifford Omomedia, told The Guardian that the community’s petition, which was signed by seven chiefs bothered on gross environmental pollution and degradation of farmland by Pan Ocean operations.

His words: “We are pleading with the state government through the council chairman to look into the matter, because for us, enough is enough,” he said.

“After sixty days and nothing happens, we will be left with no option than to block the access road, because it is our land. Our patience has ran out.

“That is why we have decided to open up to the world that since 45 years there has not been any employment opportunities for our youths, no contract and nothing whatsoever from Pan Ocean to show for the years of oil exploration.

“Yet, we are suffering all manners of environmental degradation and health hazards, as we continually live in pains.”

Meanwhile, the Community Development Board (CDB), has denied reports in one of the national dailies of plans by the leadership of the board to shut down oil flow stations in Urhobo land.
 
An executive member of the CDB, Emma Erhire said in Asaba yesterday that the report, which alleged that Urhobo group under Oil Mining and Lease (OML) 30 planned to shut down flow stations, was unfounded and a calculated attempt to tarnish the board’s image.

He insisted that the communities around the OML 30 have a cordial relationship with the oil companies operating in Urhobo land.
 
Urhobo groups, under the OML 30, had earlier protested against Salvic Oil Company and the leadership of the CDB, over poor security network and community relations as it affects pipeline surveillance contract job.
 
The protesters had barricaded the entrance to the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC), Edjeba, Warri, Delta State yesterday, carrying placards with inscriptions such as, No To Salvic, Yes To Heritage and Salvic Must Go, among others.


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