Agip oil spill disrupts economic activities in Bayelsa

Samuel Oyadongha

08 July 2012, Sweetcrude, Yenagoa – A major oil spill was weekend reported to have occured in the coastal communities of Sabatoru and Igbeta-Ewoama in Nembe local government area of Bayelsa State, disrupting the fishing and economic activities of the people.

The spillage, according to community sources, is from pipelines owned by the Nigerian Agip Oil Company (NAOC) – a trunkline linking the Brass export terminal.

According to sources from the coastal enclave, the spill, which was noticed on Friday had spread to the waterways, creeks and farms along the Nembe Kingdom.

The impacted communities’ leadership it was learnt had reported the incident to the management of Agip but it was gathered that the company had not responded at the time of filing this report.

Chairman of the Oil and Gas Committee of Nembe Kingdom, Chief Nengi James in a statement yesterday confirmed the development and accused the oil major of adopting a delay tactics for prompt clean up operation.

“Having visited the affected sites, it is indeed sad and most unfortunate that in spite of the huge consequences occasioned by the oil spill, Agip has failed to liaise with the Nembe Kingdom Oil and Gas Committee to discuss how clean-up could be done.

“It is instructive to note that multi-national companies operating in the Niger Delta region have often employed delay tactics in dealing with oil spillages. They allow the oil spill to spread to rivers and mangrove forest before coming for inspection and clean-ups. While frowning on such lackadaisical and irresponsible attitude by Agip and others, we wish to state that an issue like this is capable of punctuating the cordial relationship between Agip and Nembe Kingdom,” the Chairman said.

About the Author

  • Oil companies operating in the Niger Delta have a very poor response attitude to oil spill incidents occasioned by both vandalism and operational challenges, while these companies may enjoy the benefits of working hand in glove with a government that has become totally insensitive and insensate to the health and wellbeing of its people, they must note that there is always a reckoning somewhere down the road.