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ERA/FoEN hails N’Assembly over energy bill, flays Bassey

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• I remain BoT chair, HOMEF boss insists, as group disowns Ojo
Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria (ERA/FoEN) has hailed the decision of National Assembly to assent to the Renewable Energy Bill before it to ensure a just energy transition.

ERA equally removed the Director, Health of Mother Earth Foundation (HOMEF), Nnimmo Bassey, as member of its Board of Trustees (BoT), citing conflict of interest in the organisation as a result of his leadership style.

Addressing journalists at the ‘General Assembly and Strategy Meeting on the State of the Environment in Nigeria’ organised by ERA yesterday, the Executive Director, Dr. Godwin Ojo, emphasised the need for the Hydrocarbon Pollution Remediation Project (HYPREP) on Ogoni clean-up.

Ojo commended the resolution of the Senate over the recent commitment to break the nearly 20 years jinx on the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) currently before the National Assembly.

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He reiterated the need for the bill to be speedily passed and advocated the transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy, calling on government to give adequate attention to the bill.

On the crisis in ERA/FoEN, Ojo said the general assembly had resolved that Bassey be removed as trustee.
BUT Bassey insisted that he remained BoT chairman of ERA/FoEN, adding that the general assembly called by Ojo, where he was purportedly removed as BoT chairman, was illegal, and that all decisions reached at that meeting amounted to nullity.

He said Ojo was removed as ED of the organisation at an Emergency Board Meeting on October 3, 2020 based on a report of an Independent Evaluation of ERA/FoEN.

Also, the group’s Board of Trustees and Governing Board said it learnt of a purported General Assembly meeting convened in Benin City on October 7, 2020 by Ojo, who it maintained, was recently disengaged as executive director of ERA/FoEN.

In a statement issued by Secretary of the BoT, Ike Okonta, the Board said it would not have considered the illegal meeting worth being given any attention, but for the stakeholders of ERA/FoEN who might be scandalised if the Board remained silent.

“To put the records straight, Ojo was removed from the Trusteeship of the ERA/FoEN in 2015 following allegations of gross misconduct and actions inimical to peace and progress of the organisation.

Members of the Board who signed Ojo’s Ouster are Nnimmo Bassey, Ike Okonta, Joe-Okei Odumakin, Professor Margaret Okorodudu-Fubara, Akinbode Oluwafemi and Daphne Wysham.

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