*Says project pace not slow
Port Harcourt — The Hydrocarbon Pollution Remediation Project, HYPREP, has assured that the implementation of the recommendations of the United Nations Environment Programme, UNEP in Ogoniland was not slow, contrary to claims in some quarters.
To this end, the Project announced that it has completed the remediation of five polluted sites out of the 21 sites, awarded to contractors in January 2019 in the phase one of the cleanup process.
Speaking in Port Harcourt to commemorate the 9th anniversary of the submission of the UNEP Report on Ogoniland to the Federal Government, Project Coordinator of HYPREP, Dr Marvin Dekil, maintained that the project was not slow as there was need for planning and preparation to lay a solid foundation for the takeoff of the project.
Dekil said HYPREP was waiting for its internal and external verification of samples collected from the five remediated sites, as well as the final results from statutory environmental regulatory bodies in the country.
Accto him, “In January 2019 contracts for phase one batch one remediation of polluted sites were awarded marking the beginning of clean-up of impacted sites as recommended by UNEP.
“21 lots across the four Local Government Areas of Ogoniland in the category of less-complex sites were handed over to 21 companies for remediation.
“As at today, five of the companies have completed remediation work with the rest to round off remediation work in the next few weeks.
“The five lots were remediation work has been completed are, Deebon Bodo/Mogho in Gokana, Nkeleoken/Alode in Eleme, Korokoro Well in Tai, Obolo Ebubu in Eleme and Barakpor Botem in Tai Local Government Areas of Rivers state.
“Most of our lots in Eleme, Tai, and Gokana are finished, we are waiting for our internal confirmation results from those sites, we will also invite the statutory environmental regulatory agencies to do their analysis and give their report.”
The HYPREP boss also disclosed that bids have been open for the awarding of contracts for the provision and reticulation of potable waterthat would serve the four affected LGAs of Rivers state in supplying over 10,000litres of water per day to the communities.
Dekil pointed out perception as one of the major challenges facing the project, as most people have a wrong perception of the project, with the expectation that the project was expected the carter for the infrastructural development of Ogoniland.
He also added that HYPREP was engaging the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, in the development of Ogoniland.