Port Harcourt — Benikrukru community in Warri-Southwest Local Government Area of Delta state, has warned the management of Chevron Nigeria Limited, that it will not accept to be treated in the same style with that of Ogoni/Shell experience.
This is as the community has demanded for adequate compensation and immediate clean-up of oil spills from CNL’s 16” Makaraba-Utonana-Abiteye trunkline, which occurred in the community since 16th, February 2021.
Chairman of the Community Mr. Solomon Eris, and Secretary Mr. Kingsley Ukuli, said the crude oil discharged into the rivers and environs from Chevron’s facility, resulted in large scale devastation and degradation of the environment, disrupting fishing and farming activities and brought untold hardship on the people.
The community stated that they are utterly dissatisfied with the manner CNL was handling the oil spill incident, accusing the company of demonstrating lackadaisical attitude to the affected individuals and the entire Benikruku communities since 2021.
“Making this development a reality to worry about is that despite the excruciating pains resulting from the ugly development which the victims and the communities have stoically endured, Chevron has neither provided relief materials to the affected individuals, nor shown remorse for their failings and failures or deemed it necessary to take active steps to clean up the affected areas through environmental remediation.
“Indeed, it has been a very painful experience for us and worse, the world which has benefitted from our God given natural resource especially the Federal Government of Nigeria. They have looked on while we suffer this form of environmental degradation, killing, torture in the hand of Chevron Nigeria Limited
“This development we can no longer accept as it is callously wicked, out of tune with international best practices. While it is evident that we are a peace-loving community, we must, as a community, inform Chevron Management, with egoless clarity that our case will not, in all ramifications, be treated in the same style with that of Ogoni/Shell experience.
“For Chevron to think along that axis is to misstate the fact and underrate our resolve. Yes, we are people of peace, but we refuse to be victims of peace. The best time for Chevron to act is now.”
The community said Chevron who prides itself as one of the best organizations in the country when it comes to Corporate Social Responsibility, has refused to provide the impacted communities with relief materials since 2021, describing the development as wicked and out of tune with international best practices.
“It is important to underline that this dangerous oil spillage was first discovered in the early morning of February 16, 2021, by the people of the community who were predominantly into fishing. The crude oil discharged into the rivers and environs has since resulted in large scale devastation and degradation of the environment, disrupted fishing and farming activities and visited the people of the areas with untold hardship.
“Ordinarily, we expected Chevron to come up with a clearly and adequately conceptualized remediation plan and proposal on how to compensate the affected individuals and communities. But to our greatest chagrin, Chevron via series of statements absolved itself of any wrong doing. Noting that the said spillage neither emanated from nor has anything to do with their facilities.
“This high level of crass corporate irresponsibility on the part of the American oil giant continued until a JIV was carried out and established beyond reasonable doubt that Chevron facility which was installed in the year 1974, has recorded what the report described as two pin holes, a development that did not only end Chevron’s season of lies but established its culpability.
“While this present behaviour by Chevron remains a conundrum and is unacceptable to the peace loving people of the kingdom and a shock to the affected individuals and communities, we have again observed with dissatisfaction the brazen and inconsiderate posture of Chevron management to the plight of the affected individuals and communities at large.”
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