Port Harcourt — The Movement for Survival of Ogoni People, MOSOP has alleged that there is a plan by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, to sublet OML11 to an indigenous oil firm, Sahara Energy.
Recall that OML11 previously operated by the Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria, was taken over by the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company, a subsidiary of NNPC, following the refusal of the federal government to renew the lease for SPDC.
MOSOP at the end of its Steering Committee Meeting, said that the people of Ogoni were not opposed to resumption of oil production in Ogoni oilfields, but it must be preceded by a broad based consultation and agreements reached with the people.
President of MOSOP, Prince Biira said anything short of broadbased consultation, will resisted by the people.
He also charged President Muhammadu Buhari to take action on the Bill for establishment of Federal University of Environmental Technology, in Saakpenwa once it is passed on to him by the National Assembly, while tasking the National Assembly to expedite action on the Bill.
“While we are not opposed to resumption of oil production in Ogoni, we are totally opposed to the primitive and conflict laden approach being adopted. We insist that for oil extraction to resume, it must be preceded by a broad based consultation and agreements reached with the people.
“The committee rejects the confirmed understanding between NNPC, NPDC and some top Abuja based politicians and their collaborators to sublet OML11 to Sahara Energy.
“We vowed to mobilise the people to resist any attempt by any company to enter Ogoni through the back door to explore and exploit our oil and gas resources without our social licence.
“That, for any discussion to commence, the investor must be prepared to cede an acceptable percentage of its equity share to the Ogoni community.”
MOSOP also called for punitive sanctions against erring regulatory and related institutions, who failed to ensure that operators maintain standards.
“We commend the federal government for admitting that bad industry practices have been responsible for decades of ruination of the Ogoni environment occasioned by massive oil spills. However, this position does not absolve Abuja of blame. This situation would have been averted if successive Nigerian regimes had taken their environmental governance responsibilities seriously.
“The Steering Committee thus urge the government to strengthen its regulatory and other relevant institutions including the judiciary to function effectively by strictly enforcing subsisting environmental protection laws. It also recommended introduction and implementation of punitive sanctions against erring regulatory and related institutions.”