Delta community laments ecological pollution
The oil-rich Ijaw community hosts some oil companies, including Chevron Nigerian Limited (CNL) and Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC)/Elcrest Joint Venture.
At the official take-over ceremony of the community’s cottage hospital by the state government, the community pleaded with government to save it from the pollution threatening the residents’ survival.
The Polobubo/Tsekelewu Cottage Hospital was built and equipped by CNL, at the instance of the Egbema-Gbaramatu Community Development Foundation (EGCDF).
National president of Polobubo/Tsekelewu National Association, Mr. Ebilate Mac-Yoroki, at the event, said that if nothing was done urgently about the pollution, the community would be worse for it.
While expressing gratitude to the governor and other stakeholders who facilitated the building and equipping of the hospital, Mac-Yoroki tasked the governor to speedily attend to the lack of physical development in the community.
He said: “As hosts to Chevron Nigeria Limited in Opuekeba, Olero fields and offshore flow stations as coastal communities; NPDC/Elcrest Joint Venture, operators of Opuama flow station (OML 40); Tsekelewu/Polobubo marginal field with about 15 oil wells, to be operated by Sahara Energy Limited; and Tsekelewu/Polobubo marginal field-OML 130 concession, to be operated by Conoil Nigeria Limited.”
Your Excellency will agree to our claim of being one of the main sustainers of the national economy, as well as one of the best assets to the economic viability of Delta State.
“We wish to bring to your attention some of the numerous challenges facing the communities. Polobubo (Tsekelewu) communities and environs are the definition of ecological degradation, orchestrated by oil exploration.
“The river you traversed to this town used to be as deep as 10 metres, before the advent of oil exploration. Today, this same river has been silted to less than a metre in depth during the dry season. The fresh water has been replaced by salty water from the Atlantic Ocean, destroying economic trees and vegetation that provided the people with lucrative livelihood,” Mac-Yoroki lamented.
He urged government to quicken the dredging of the waterways, reclamation of new Polobubo and construction of the critical Trans-Egbema road from Opuama to Polobubo. and from Ogbudugbudu to Polobubo.
According to him, the 1,000KVA power generating plant supplied by Delta State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission (DESOPADEC) is currently lying idle, pleading that installation of the plant should be considered as a temporary measure to their power problem.