Ogonis renew demand for implementation of UNEP report

Semiu Salami
Semiu Salami
The devastation in Ogoniland

The President of the Movement for the Survival of Ogoni People (MOSOP), Legbosi Piagbara, has urged the Federal Government to implement the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) report on Ogoniland.

The UNEP report on Ogoniland, released in 2011, recommended that the Federal Government and Shell should clean up the area, which was affected by several oil spills.

Piagbara made the call at Bori, headquarters of Khana Local Government Area of Rivers, during the celebration of this year’s Ogoni Day.

He said that the delay in the implementation of the report was detrimental to the Ogoni people, as many of them were already suffering from the effects of oil spills on their environment.

Pigbara also urged the Federal Government to reciprocate the non-violence approach of the Ogonis by ensuring the quick cleanup of their area.

He also bemoaned the absence of functional hospitals and medical personnel in Ogoni communities to meet the health care needs of the people.

In his address, Gov. Chibuike Amaechi of Rivers urged youths in the area to abide by the spirit of the Ogoni struggle initiated by the late environmentalist, Ken Saro Wiwa.

The governor, who was represented by Sen. Magnus Abe, urged the youth not to take advantage of the non-implementation of the UNEP report to foment trouble in their neighbourhood.

He urged them to support the government’s efforts to deliver democracy dividends to Ogoni people.

Amaechi said that although the area had been peaceful, the implementation of the UNEP report would ensure a better and more peaceful society.

Godwin Giniwa, the Chairman of Rivers Traditional Rulers Council, said that medical reports indicated that one out of every 10 persons in Ogoniland faced the risks of contracting cancer because of oil spills in the area.

Giniwa, who was represented by Suanu Baridam, urged the Federal Government to implement the recommendations of the UNEP report.

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