07 November 2017, Sweetcrude, Port Harcourt – The National Environmental Standards and Regulation Enforcement Agency, NESREA, has cautioned the people of the Niger Delta region against engaging in illegal refining of petroleum products and pipeline vandalism.
The agency stated that such activities have caused colossal damages to the natural environment.
Zonal Director of NESREA in Rivers State, Mr. Raph Nnam, gave the warning while addressing stakeholders at a one-day sensitisation and advocacy programme organised by the National Orientation Agency in Port Harcourt.
Nnam explained that said majority of the Niger Delta population depended on the natural environment for their daily survival, but regretted that illegal bunkering activities had displaced a lot of people through the destruction of the ecosystem which they depend on for daily survival.
According to him, “A lot of people in the Niger Delta are fishermen and peasant farmers.
“Picking of periwinkles and other seafood that live in the mangroves are a source of livelihoods for many, and the people have been displaced of their natural means of livelihood.”
The NESREA zonal director, who was represented at the event by a staff of the agency, Mrs. Ikuru Bio, called on those involved in the activity of illegal bunkering to desist forthwith and embrace other legal and profitable means of livelihoods, such as skills acquisition.
He called on NOA and other critical stakeholders to embark on massive public enlightenment campaign to curb the menace of illegal bunkering and bring sanity to the environment.
The NESREA boos further described the environment as a fundamental human right, saying that “any damage to the environment dishonours the dignity of humanity.”