Hope of an accelerated lasting solution to the recurring hydrocarbon seepage and contamination of boreholes in Diamond Estate along the Igando/Iba Expressway in Lagos appeared on the horizon over the weekend with the unveiling of renowned geophysicist and environmentalist, Prof. Bolanle Ako of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile- Ife as lead consultant to the NNPC in its quest to seek permanent solution to the oil leak challenge.
Speaking during an interactive session with residents of the Estate, Dr. Levi Ajuonuma, Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division of the Corporation who led a team of NNPC/PPMC officials to the site stated that Prof. Ako would be leading a team of internationally acclaimed environment experts and scientists to establish the root cause of the seepage in good time for an extensive remediation exercise.
“The NNPC has a commitment to ensure your safety. Our target in this regard is to seek for a permanent scientific solution and at the same time we are providing some palliatives in the interim to secure life and property while waiting for the lasting remedy.” Ajuonuma stated.
He said because of the nature of the pollution it is envisaged that the study could extend beyond the vicinity of the leak site to other areas as may be deemed necessary by the experts.
Throwing more light on the planned exercise Prof. Ako disclosed that the immediate task of the team would involve detailed study of the comprehensive petroleum products pipeline map of the entire state to enable it have proper reference.
“Pollution is not static it is mobile so we want to know the source and the extent it has gone and advice NNPC appropriately. I am going to put a group of professionals from the University and from practising professionals outside the University,” he stated.
Prof. Ako also informed that the investigation may take about a year to complete cutting across the rainy and dry seasons to enable the team have a feel of both periods.
He assured the community that the team would be able to get to the source of the problem and consequently determine which aquiver that has not been affected by the pollution so as to allow for fresh water.
Emmanuel Wowo, Executive Director Operations, PPMC, while restating the commitment of the Company to maintain the integrity of its pipelines lamented the incidents of pipeline vandalism across the Atlas Cove-Mosimi- Satellite depot pipeline route which records an average of 500 breaks annually.
Adeola Solomon representative of the Alimosho Federal Constituency in the House of Reps. pledged his commitment to mobilise residents of the estate and the entire constituency to cooperate with the NNPC in its pursuit of lasting remedy to the oil leak challenge and safety of the vital products pipelines across Alimosho Federal Constituency and beyond.
He however implored the Corporation to fast track work on the site and also make public the comprehensive pipeline map of the area to guide residents.
Samson Adebayo, President of the Diamond Estate Residents Association also expressed similar feeling.