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Reps direct agencies to clean up Delta oil spillage


House Plenary. Photo; TWITTER/HOUSENGR

The House of Representatives yesterday directed the Nigeria Energy Security Command (NESC) and the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA) to clean up the oil spillage at Ovade-Oghara community in Ethiope West Local Council of Delta State.

Adopting a motion under matters of urgent national importance sponsored by Ben Igbakpa at the plenary presided over by Deputy Speaker Ahmed Wase in Abuja, the lawmakers also called on the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to ensure free treatment of respiratory and other related ailments arising from the spill.

The lower legislative chamber also directed the agency to provide relief materials to the victims and others that have lost their farmlands and sources of livelihood. The House further mandated its Committee on Petroleum Upstream to interface with the community leaders and oil companies operating in the area to address the effects of their operations.


Igbakpa, who represents Ethiope East/Ethiope West Federal Constituency in the green chamber, recalled that the incident occurred on October 1, 2019 due to a ruptured pipeline in the area.He claimed that in spite of efforts by the community leaders to reach the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and the oil majors running the flow station to contain the spillage, nothing had been done on the facility.

The lawmaker expressed the fear that the debilitating effects of the spill could lead to fire outbreak, carnage, contamination of waters and soils, health issues such as serious respiratory problems, increased blood pressure, stomach irritation, muscle weakness, changes in nerve reflexes, liver, kidney and heart damages as well as general environmental issues.

Besides, the Governor Ifeanyi Okowa administration is to transform the way education is run in the state. Consequently, plans are in top gear to launch an Education Trust Fund for the better funding of the sector. Also, the government has put in motion plans to ensure that the state’s educational facilities enjoy uninterrupted power supply.

The Commissioner for High Education, Prof. Patrick Mouboghare, made the disclosure during the commissioning of new hostels and a five-classroom block at the Western Delta University, Oghara in Ethiope West council area of the state. He urged the tertiary institution and the other private universities to establish medical schools without delay, instead of waiting to build teaching hospitals first.

The commissioner implored the ivory towers to make use of nearby reputable hospitals in training their students.Unfolding the plans, Mouboghare said the state government would soon come out with the details of the education trust fund to meet the needs of both public and private tertiary schools in the state.

This, he said, will ensure that the standard of the universities in the state would be second to none in the country as well as encourage other higher institutions to sprout up in the state, and eventually make Delta the hub of higher education in Africa while it harnesses the attendant benefits.


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