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Community Leader Decries Delay In Oil Spill Clean-Up

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A community leader in Ibeno in Akwa Ibom State, Chief Okon
Akpanowong, has criticised the suspension of the clean-up of Atlantic coastline
contaminated by an oil spill on August13.

The National Oil Spills Detection and Response Agency
(NOSDRA) had ordered Mobil Producing Nigeria (MPN) to clean up the coastline
within its Qua Iboe oil fields.

Reacting to the suspension, Akpanowong said that he
participated in the meetings with officials of Mobil on the clean-up exercise
but regretted that no action had been taken two weeks after.

“It was resolved two weeks ago amongst all stakeholders,
namely Mobil, community and regulators, including Ministry of Environment that
clean-up be extended for additional 10 days.

“We, therefore, do not know why the extension has not yet
resumed, we signed all the papers and there is no reason to justify this delay
of two weeks.

“The impact on the coastline environment is serious because
it affects our fishing population, the grasses along the sea coast and aquatic
life as well,” he said.

Akpanowong explained that the abandoned spill impacted site
had contaminated new areas that were originally not affected due to the
changing direction of sea currents.

Mr Irvin Obot, Zonal Director of NOSDRA, told The Tide that
the agency was concerned and worried about the suspension of the clean-up
exercise.

“ I got a report that the clean-up has not resumed, but I
will get across to find out what the issue is,” Obot said.

The Tide recalls that Mobil had in a statement on August 19,
accepted to clean the coastline as directed by NOSDRA.

The oil firm also stated that the source of the oil found on
the coastline within its operation was unknown.

However, Mr Nigel Cookey-Gam, Communications Manager of
Mobil, in response to the suspension of coastline clean-up and its impact on
the environment, said that the clean-up would soon resume, adding that “the
contractors have been engaged and they will deploy personnel shortly.’’

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Ex-APGA Scribe, Obasi, Petitions IGP Over Alleged Assassination Attempt

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Former Deputy National Secretary of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Chief Jerry Obasi, has petitioned the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Adamu, over alleged attempt on his life by suspected hired assassins in Ebonyi State.
Obasi in a statement, yesterday, said he was trailed from Nkalagu in Ishielu Council Area of the state by an unmarked, white commuter Hiace bus with tinted glasses last Sunday night while returning from a meeting alleging that  the aim was to assassinate him.
He said when he noticed that his life was in danger, he sped up and meandered through different roads immediately he got to Abakaliki, to keep away from the view of those who stalked him.
The ex-APGA scribe said he rode in his Mercedes S-Class and that the suspected assassins immediately followed suit, turning the exercise into a car race of sort to the amazement of onlookers.
Obasi  alleged that Ebonyi State governor, Chief David Umahi, has a hand in his ordeal for holding strong opinions against  his administration.
“Earlier before this ugly and ill-fated incident of 26 July, 2020, I had received information about an imminent attack on me by Ebonyi State governor’s boys. I called one of the leaders of the boys and he promised to call me for us to meet the following day which didn’t happen. The next thing I saw was this attempt on my life,” Obasi said.
Governor Umahi who spoke through his Special Assistant on Media, Francis Nwaze, dismissed the allegations as baseless. He said the governor  has never sent any of his appointees or supporters to attack anyone, let alone with the intention to kill.

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Community Policing: Shun Compromise, Monarch Charges PCAC Members

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The Paramount Ruler/ Nye Nwe Eli, Rumuogba, Eze Temple Ejekwu, has charged members of the Police Community Advisory Committee (PCAC) not to compromise, if they are prepared for the task.
Ejekwu gave the charge during the inauguration of the committee at Mini Okoro Police Station, recently in Rumuogba, Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of Rivers State.
The Eze Ogba Iji- Nu -Ede, said that the charge became imperative in order to keep the aim of the committee alive.
Dedication and commitment he said are other values the PCAC members must possess, in an attempt to achieve the mission and vision behind the creation of the outfit.
According to him, the creation of the committee would help in no small measure in curbing crime in the rural areas, as its members are grassroot based.
Dr Ejekwu also called on members of the public to feel free and provide useful information to the police and PCAC members and added that crime fighting should be viewed as everyone’s responsibility.
“Security is not one person’s job, so members of the public must provide useful and timely information for the police and PCAC, if they want the group to succeed”, he said.
On the security level of the state, he rated the Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike high going by the relative peace enjoyed in the state.
He further charged the committee members to work in line with Governor Wike’s vision to enthrone business friendly environment that would attract permanent investors in the area.
Meanwhile, the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) of Mini Okoro Police Station, CSP Opayemi Olufunke Isi has reassured members of the public of the police determination to rid the public of crime and thanked the monarch to support for the police.

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Bayelsa Promises To Curb Gender-Based Violence, Child Abuse

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The Bayelsa State Government has promised to curb all forms of social violence against women and the maltreatment of children in the state.
Permanent Secretary of the state Ministry of Women,Children and Social Development, Mrs Ayi Ujile stated this during an interview with The Tide in Yenagoa.
She maintained that recently, women through the support of NGOs,women professional bodies and faith based organisations had had to stage protests across various states in the nation to register their grievances against the wanton social Violence’s meted out to them by men in their respective domains.
According to the permanent secretary, following government’s resolve to ending these ill treatments facing women of all age brackets in the state, successive administrations had made concerted efforts in bringing those infringing on women’s rights to book.
Speaking against the backdrop of violation of children’s rights, she mentioned that with the domestication of the Child rights act by the State Assembly last year maltreatment of children and wards will soon be history.
She stressed that the State owned Orphanage home is functioning ultimately, just as she stated that the administrators of the orphanage in consultation with appropriate government ministries had also rescued new born babies from their insane mothers in the streets of the state.
“We’re more than ever willing to stop the menace of social violence against women in this state”, she said.
“We’re aware that very presently women of the state joined their peers from other States to replicate same protest against rape, sexual harassment and other ills meted out to women”, she added.

 

 

Ariwera Ibibo-Howells,Yenagoa.

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