17 August 2018, Sweetcrude, Port Harcourt — The Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria has called on the Federal Government to disband the Hydrocarbon Pollution Remediation Project, HYPREP, to pave the way for the clean-up of Ogoniland.
HYPREP is the body established by the Federal Government to initiate and restore all hydrocarbon-impacted communities and sites in line with the recommendations of the report of the United Nations Environment Programme, UNEP, on environmental restoration of Ogoniland.
The environmental rights group said its call was imperative as HYPREP did not have the capacity to drive the cleanup of Ogoni, hence the delay in the commencement of the exercise since it was flagged off in 2016.
The Executive Director of ERA, Dr. Godwin Uyi Ojo, charged the Federal Government to constitute Ogoni Environmental Restoration Authority to manage the process as recommended by UNEP.
Ojo, who spoke in Port Harcourt at a two-day Media Training and Toxic Tour of Ogoniland, also accused the Federal Government of not following the recommendations of the UNEP report on Ogoniland.
He explained that the current administration does not have the political will to commence the cleanup of Ogoniland, pointing out that the use of HYPREP as against the recommendation of UNEP was already a deviation.
According to him, “Ogoni Environmental Restoration Authority should be constituted to implement the project and not HYPREP. We lack confidence in HYPREP to carry out the process.
“HYPREP cannot do the project because they lack the machinery and they do not have the capacity to drive it. But, Ogoni Environmental Restoration Authority working hand in hand with the National Oil Spill Detection and Remediation Agency, UNEP and other technical partners Ogoni will be cleaned.
“CSOs are planning protest against HYPREP. Shell is responsible for the issue in Ogoni yet they are members of the Governing Council and Board of Trustee of HYPREP, so they are teleguiding the whole process.”