Community raises alarm over loss of lives, property to erosion
The people of Okpai community in Ndokwa East Local Government Area of Delta have cried out over the devastating effects of erosion in the area, saying that no fewer than 150 houses and 14 persons have been lost to the problem in the last nine months.
The Public Relations Officer of the community, Victor Igweokwu who spoke to journalists yesterday in Okpai on behalf of the people, accused the Niger-Delta Development Commission (NDDC) of abandoning the shore protection project contract awarded by the Federal Government since 2011, alleging that N6 billion was wasted out of N11 billion allotted to the project.
He added that the construction company, Orbit and Marine/Energy Service Limited had been mobilized with N6 billion and the youths might be forced to protest this, allegedly masterminded by federal government, if urgent steps are not taken to ensure work resumes on the project soonest.
He said that oil was first discovered in Okpai in 1964 and was revisited for exploration in 1973 after the civil war, however, ìThere is virtually nothing to show for all the exploration. Each time we protest the neglect and marginalization by the oil companies, they simply mobilize the military to intimidate us. We have no roads, no health care centres, no viable markets, nothingî.
He called on the federal government to send a team to verify his claims, alleging that oil companies in the area have refused to honour and implement the MoU signed with them.
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