Port Harcourt — Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has charged the Federal Government to relocate the Hydrocarbon Pollution Remediation Project, HYPREP office from Port Harcourt to Ogoniland, in order to serve the interest of the people.
HYPREP is the body set up by the Federal Ministry of Environment, to implement the recommendations in the report submitted to the government by the United Nations Environment Programme, UNEP in 2011.
Amongst other things, HYPREP is saddled with the responsibility of remediating oil impacted sites in Ogoniland, provide potable water and alternative souce livelihoods for communities impacted by oil spills, set up an integrated soil management centre, etc.
Speaking in Bori on Saturday during the grand reception by the people of Ogoni in honour of the governor, Wike wondered why HYPREP office will be located in Port Harcourt, whereas the pollution and clean-up was in Ogoniland.
The Governor explained that it was not right for the Federal Government to have HYPREP office sited outside Ogoniland, as such would cause those saddled with the UNEP Report implementation to become insensitive to the plight of the people.
“Let me use this opportunity to appeal to HYPREP to relocate their office to Ogoniland.
“You said you’re coming to clean Ogoniland, move your to Bori. You cannot talk about cleaning up a place and your office is in another place.
“Move your office to Bori and stay here so that you will feel, hear and understand the yearnings, feelings and concerns of the people. It is very important. So I urge that you do the right thing.”
The governor also disclosed that he has taken steps to implement the ban on open grazing as resolved by Southern State governors in Asaba, Delta State.
Also speaking, a member of the Board of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, Sen. Magnus Abe, explained that a good politician is not measured by the number of enemies he acquires, but by the number of friends.
Abe canvassed for politics without bitterness, where the people can work together to achieve development, while commending Governor Wike for giving the people of Ogoni the opportunity to serve in different capacities in the state.
Also, a former lawmaker who represented Rivers South East Senatorial District in the National Assembly, Sen Lee Maeba, commended Governor Wike for eliminating the riverine/upland political dichotomy in the state.