MKPOIKANA UDOMA 26 September 2014, Sweetcrude, Port Harcourt – A group, the National Coalition against Gas Flaring and Oil Spills in the Niger Delta, NACGOND, has raised an alarm over non-compliance by the Nigerian Agip Oil Company, NAOC, on environmental management in the Niger Delta region.
Country representative and national coordinator of NACGOND, Mr. Inemo Samiama, while briefing newsmen in Port Harcourt, called on the Federal Government to revoke the operational license of Nigerian Agip Oil Company “following their track record of sub-standard facility and dilapidated equipments”.
According to hum, “the Niger Delta over the years has been inundated by unending cases of documented and undocumented accounts of oil spills. The recent occurrence in September 4th 2014 at Ayamabele and Kalaba communities in Yenegoa, Bayelsa state, from facilities operated by Agip attracted our concern to speak for the affected communities.
“The Nigerian Agip Oil Company is one of the worst in terms of environmental compliance in the Niger Delta, their facilities are not up to standard, a lot of their equipment are dilapidated, they have serious issues with pipeline integrity, and these give us the opportunity to raise the alarm about Agip’s track record with regards to environmental management in the Niger Delta. Often times, they are not sanctioned when we all know the poor track records of Agip”
The group wondered why spills have continued to occur from Agip without intervention from the regulating authorities in terms of penalising or sanctioning the company.
Samiama appealed to the Federal Government to put an immediate stop to what he described as ‘appalling behaviour’ of the NAOC.
“We are really disappointed over the activities of Agip in the Niger Delta region, it is strange that the company would still be left for so long to operate when they continue to cause environmental degradation of host communities without remedy to damages, unlike they do in other countries where they operate,” he argued.
However, it should be recalled that after the recent oil spill in Yenegoa, the Bayelsa State Ministry of Environment issued a statement asking NAOC to temporary shutdown operations in their facilities at Ayamebele and Kalaba communities of the state.