21 February 2018, Sweetcrude, Port Harcourt — The Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People, MOSOP, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to avert a possible breakdown of the peace in Ogoniland by putting a check to the activities of oil firms scrambling to gain access to resume oil exploration activities in Ogoni.
MOSOP particularly accused two indigenous oil firms, BelemaOil Producing Limited and RoboMichael Limited of desperation for Ogoni oilfield and creating local groups sharply divided against one another with potentials for serious crises in the area.
The Publicity Secretary of MOSOP, Mr. Fegalo Nsuke, who disclosed that oil resumption in Ogoniland was not a priority of the people at the moment, accused the Federal Government of feigning ignorance while companies representing her interests continue to sponsor local actors.
Nsuke in a statement made available to newsmen called on the Federal Government to initiate discussions between all parties to the prolonged conflict including Shell, the government and the people of Ogoni to discuss a peaceful settlement.
According to the statement, “MOSOP contend that the divide and conquer tactics of BelemaOil and RoboMichael, both associates of the Shell Petroleum, are seriously pitching Ogonis against one another and could lead to a full-scale conflict between these groups.
“MOSOP is displeased that the Nigerian Government is feigning ignorance while companies representing her interests, notably BelemaOil and RoboMichael, continue to sponsor local actors who have turned themselves into rival groups projecting the various interests of their sponsors and representing real threats to the peace of Ogoniland.
“The Nigerian President should call BelemaOil and RoboMichael to order, the people of Ogoni have at no time approved the resumption of oil mining in the area.
MOSOP further call on President Buhari to prevail on all stakeholders involved in the remediation of Ogoni environment to release their counterpart funding for the speedy commencement of the cleanup of its polluted sites.
“We note the threats faced by our people due to the continued delays in the cleanup of Ogoniland.
“But we are dismayed that while the realities of the death sentence passed on our people by Shell’s poor business operations remain with us, Government is rather silent and by implication encouraging companies representing her interests notably RoboMicheal and BelemaOil to continue sponsoring groups and cause strong division with potentials to ignite serious conflict in Ogoniland.
“We note that the activities of BelemaOil and RoboMichael advertently bears on the oil interests of the Federal Government and therefore President Muhammadu Buhari should take full responsibility for the peace of Ogoniland by placing a restriction and prevailing on these companies not to cause crises in Ogoniland through the various groups they now sponsor to advance their interests in the area.
“We maintain that the way forward is a peaceful settlement through dialogue taking into strong consideration the interests of the Ogoni people as articulated in the Ogoni Bill of Rights,” the statement said