NNPC Budget Hinders Reps Oversight On Ogoniland

Oil spilt in Ogoniland/photo: AFP

The uncertainty over the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) budget is preventing the bid by the House of Representatives to look into Ogoniland cleanup plan by the Federal Government.

Chairman House Committee on Environment and Habitat Obinna Chidoka said because the budget of the NNPC has yet to be forwarded to the National Assembly, it has become impossible for the committee to determine the level of government preparedness for the clean up launched by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo at Ogoni, River State.

Chidoka further said another aspect is the level of  international oil companies’ involvement in the clean up. He said companies like Shell Plc, Total Oil and Agip, are required to provide financial aid for the exercise.

Reports say the Nigerian government also plans to stretch the clean up to other parts of Niger Delta, voting N9.52 billion for it in the 2017 budget “to safeguarding of water, lands, creeks and ecosystem of the region.”

A look back

Oil exploration began in Ogoniland in the 1950s, with more than 30 billion pounds of oil extracted till date.The crude extraction has destroyed the ecosystem.

In July, during the reign of Ibe Kachikwu as Group Managing Director of the NNPC, the company reported an operating profit in May 2016 of N273.74 million as against its operating loss of N19.43 billion in April.

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