Ilaje Community calls for immediate prosecution of NDDC Chairman, House of Commitee over pollution
By Samuel Ogunsona
The Niger Delta Development Commission, (NDDC) should be held responsible to the destruction of land and aquatic resources in Ilaje Communities.
On Friday, the Ilaje Parapo Forum (IPF) called for the immediate arrest and prosecution of the NDDC Chairman, House of Representative Committee, Hon. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo.
The Ilaje community alleged l illegal oil exploration causing pollution that has affected the livelihood of locals.
This was contained in a letter signed by its Chairman, Prince Funso Ajimuda, made available to Irohinodua.
According to his statement, Hon. Tunji Ojo is from the Okeagbe, a town situated in Akoko Local Government Area (LGA) in Ondo state which is about 300miles from the Niger Delta region.
He said, ‘’We write in conformity with public ethics and statutory laid down rules to official report the superfluous, abuse of office, marginalization and inhumanity of Hon. Bunmi Tunji-Ojo, the Chairman House Committee on Niger Delta Development Commission, against the people of Ilaje and ese-odo, the inhabitants of Niger Delta region of Ondo’’
‘’The Niger Delta is the Delta of the Niger River sitting directly on the Gulf of Guinea on the Atlantic Ocean in Nigeria. It is located within nine coastal southern Nigerian states, which include: all six states from the South-South geopolitical zone, one state (Ondo) from South West geopolitical zone and two states (Abia and Imo) from South East geopolitical zone. Though, Ondo State is regarded as Niger delta state, by implication, only people from Ilaje and Ese-odo share the attributes of the Niger delta. Which is widely documented in the oil production map of Nigeria and Ondo state’’
‘’They are constantly at receiving ends of the effects oil exploration in terms of pollution and other form of environmental degradation ‘’ He added.
Funso who claims that Ilaje local government is the only oil producing LGA that made Ondo the 5the largest oil producing states in Nigeria also says over ten communities are at the jar of extinction over ocean surge.
‘’It is not negotiable that Ilaje local Government is the only oil producing LGAs that made Ondo state 5th largest producer of oil in NIGERIA, with Ese-odo as the immediate impacted LGA, yet these LGAs have nothing to show for it. The Niger Delta as a petroleum-rich region has been the center of international concern over pollution that has resulted principally from major oil spills of multinational corporations of the petroleum industry. Today more than 10 communities have lost their base and almost all the communities in the coastline are at the jar of extinction due ocean surge. No single oil producing community within the oil producing area in Ilaje is open to basic social amenities of life. They are devoid of electricity, road, portable water and other social amenities. Attached as appendices are recent documents of state of heart of inhuman standard of living of people in the oil producing communities in Ilaje local government.’’
‘’The creation of NDDC is a direct product for violent agitation for resource control occasioned by the failure of Oil Minerals Producing Area Development Commission (OMPADEC). The NDDC was created in 2000 with clear mission, “An Act to provide for the repeal of the Oil, Mineral Producing Areas Commission Decree 1998, and among other things, establish a new Commission with a re-organized management and administrative structure for more effectiveness; and for the use of the sums received from the allocation of the Federation Account for tackling ecological problems which arise from the exploration of oil minerals in the Niger-Delta area and for connected purposes ( NDDC Act 2000) “. He added.