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FEC approves additional N129bn for Ogoni clean-up



The Federal Economic Council on Wednesday, in Abuja, approved the sum of N129.8bn for various projects in the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs, particularly the mandate of the United Nations Environment Programme on Ogoni Clean-up.

Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, disclosed this to journalists after the Council’s over seven-hour meeting presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo at the State House, Abuja.

He said the money would cater for the second phase of the Ogoni water project and the central remediation of newly-identified hydrocarbon-impacted sites.

In August 2011, the United Nations Environment Programme released its Environmental Assessment of Ogoniland.

The report which was inauguration by and delivered to the Goodluck Jonathan administration made recommendations to the then government, the oil and gas industry and communities to begin a comprehensive cleanup of Ogoniland, restore polluted locations and end all forms of ongoing oil contamination in the region.

The operation was eventually flagged off in June 2016 by the Vice President with the re-inauguration of the cleanup project and set up Hydrocarbon Pollution Remediation Project HYPREP to oversee the total rehabilitation of the contaminated and polluted sites of Ogoni communities.

However, The PUNCH reports that the process has suffered delays even as thousands of Ogonis from its six kingdoms of Babbe, Eleme, Gokana, Ken-Khana, Nyo Khana and Tai have yet to see the full impact of the exercise.

But speaking on Wednesday, Shehu described the meeting as an “Ogoni Day” revealed that the Niger Delta Ministry approved another N22.8bn for the second phase of the Ogoni water project and N107bn for the central remediation of newly-identified hydrocarbon-impacted sites.

He said, “You also can rightly call today as a true Ogoni day because two major contracts were approved for Ogoni. And you know that Ogoni is one of the flagships of the Buhari administration. And we’re obviously are aware that the whole world is watching Nigeria and seeing what we’re doing here.

“So there are water projects that have been awarded under the second phase in Ogoni land amounting to N22.8bn. Approval was also given for the award for the contract for the remediation of newly identified hydrocarbon impacted sites along the shoreline of Ogoni land and this is for about N107bn.”

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