PANDEF, WTP flay FG’s inaction on N’Delta situation
PAN Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF) and a group, We The People (WTP), have decried alleged Federal Government‘s lack of commitment to the Niger Delta environmental situation, despite International Oil Companies (IOCs), which messed up the region, are leaving the area.
Miffed by the development, WTP has vowed to sue the IOCs for the destruction of the environment and livelihood of the people in the course of oil exploration and exploitation.
The Executive Director of WTP, Ken Henshaw, while speaking, yesterday, in Port Harcourt, in a one-day multi-stakeholders conference on oil company divestments in the Niger Delta, said the damage done by oil companies was enough to take them to court.
Henshaw said: “I think what the oil companies have done to the Niger Delta, the environmental pollution they have caused, the livelihood lost, the destruction of the environment they engendered are well known and we’ll document health risks the companies have created. They are enough grounds to take them to court.
“We think the oil companies can be found wanting on the basis of the fact that they have, for 64 years of extraction, destroyed the traditional livelihood of the people.”
“The oil that has spilled onto the land, into the creeks and rivers of the Niger Delta region, has reduced the life expectancy in the Niger Delta region. Life expectancy in Nigeria is 54 years but life expectancy in Niger Delta is between 41 and 45 years.”
National Publicity Secretary of PANDEF, Ken Robinson, said: “On the issue of divestment, we, the people of Niger Delta need to ask ourselves the question; what do we do? Niger Delta communities are occupied communities and not host communities as it were.
“They have occupied our communities and plundered our resources and they are leaving. With all the mess, the Nigerian government is behaving like a spectator, an unconcerned spectator, watching.
“So, it has become the problem of host communities and the people of the Niger Delta to clean up this mess. What do we do? I think that is the question we need to answer here.”
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