From: TONY JOHN, Port Harcourt
Ogoni Youth Federation (OYF) has pleaded with the Federal Government to use part of the $1 billion approved for development and fighting of insurgency in the North-East, to the clean up of Ogoni devastated land.
It has also expressed worries over the continuous delay in the commencement of the implementation of the Ogoni clean up, stressing that the process is marred with poor funding.
President General of OYF, Legborsi Yamaabana, made the call yesterday, during the annual National Congress of the body at Bera Community, Gokana Local Government Area of Rivers State.
Yamaabana averred that for over three decades, the people of the area had suffered margilisation and devastation, noting that the FG would have given priority attention to the dangers bedevilling Ogoni people.
He said: “We have been in devastation for over 30 years and the Federal Government has been very slow in the implementation of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) report. For over 11 years now, nothing has been done to save the situation of the people.
“Insurgency that just started few years ago, huge amount has been approved. We are saying that part of the money should be diverted to the clean up of Ogoni, so that the work can start”.
However, in a communique issued at the end of the congress, and read by the Legal Adviser of OYF, Pyagbara Gabriel, the body decried the lackadaisical attitude of FG, International Oil Companies and Hydrocarbon Pollution Remediation Project (HYPREP), in the implementation of Ogoni clean-up.
The body further demanded for a supplementary Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), on Ogoni, since there was none at the instance.
He added that any oil company willing to resume exploration in Ogoniland must enter agreement with youths of the area.