Three oil spill incidents in Bayelsa

Samuel Oyadongha

25 August, 2011, Sweetcrude, Yenagoa – Three fresh oil spills have been reported in Ikarama in Okordia clan in Yenagoa local government area of Bayelsa State.

The new spill which is coming on the heels of the six spills earlier reported Vanguard learnt occurred along the Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) Adibawa- Okordia Flow Line, in Okordia clan.

It was gathered that the fresh spills occurred between 19 and 23 of August thereby further compounding the degradation of the already impacted land.

Though the cause of the spill could not be immediately ascertained but informed sources told Vanguard that it was the handiwork of saboteurs.

The latest incident is coming on the heel of the blaze that rocked the community which was reportedly ignited by suspected arsonists.

The latest spills it was learnt may have been responsible for the recent shut down of the company’s Adibawa-Okordia Flow Line ostensibly to prevent further spills and enable SPDC team of engineers’ effect repair works.

It was gathered that this may be the fourth time the oil facility is being shut down within the past three weeks as a result of the spills in Ikarama.

The Environment Rights Action team that visited the impacted community led by its Field Coordinator in Bayelsa State, Comrade Alagoa Morris not only decried the continued pollution of the environment but also called on the relevant authorities to take urgent steps to investigate the cause of these and other spills in the community.

He also pleaded with the company to ensure that the community is represented in JIVs, and not resort to chasing or intimidating community folks who are keen to know the cause of the spill.

Contacted SPDC Spokesman, Precious Okolobo confirmed the spills blaming it on sabotage.

He said three hacksaws were discovered Sunday by the company personnel mobilised to carry out repair work at the site of the earlier damaged pipeline.

“Nobody can have excuse to destroy what belongs to the people. Three hacksaws were recovered Sunday after the repair of the earlier damage facility,” he said.

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