Kom-Kom Explosion: RSG Seeks Fumigation Of Environment …Civil Defence Blames Pipeline Rupture On Vandals

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Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike inaugurating the Committee for Accreditation and Approval of Private Schools in Rivers State at the Government House Port Harcourt, last Monday.

The Rivers State Government has called for urgent fumigation of the site and neighbourhood of the Kom-Kom pipeline explosion where scores of people died two weeks ago.
The Permanent Secretary in the state Ministry of Environment, Dr. Emmanuel Urang, made the recommendation while appearing before the Ad-Hoc Committee set up by the House of Assembly to investigate a petition made by Kom-Kom Community.
Urang expressed worry that if nothing is done, there might be outbreak of epidemic, considering the number of deaths and bodies that may have been burnt during the inferno.
He berated the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) for laxity in responding to the plight of the people, saying that “NNPC was asked to do a clean-up in the site, but uptill now, nothing has been done”.
In his submission, a representative of Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Assistant Corps Commander, Benson Giwa blamed the incident on activities of vandals.
He explained that prior to the explosion on 22nd of June, the corps had received intelligence that there was a pipeline sabotage on the 21st of June at about 8.30pm.
On receiving the report, he said an alert was sent to the NNPC as the area got saturated with petrol and gas leakages.
“We had expected NNPC to stop supply but it seemed they did not, and so, we tried to cordon off the area but it was difficult because the area was marshy, and at about 5.30am on 22nd of June, we got report of the fire incident.”
A representative of the police said it was difficult to cordon the area because of the terrain, adding that when it heard of the fire, it alerted the fire service which came rather late as about 10 persons were already burnt in the inferno.
The police representative further noted that casualty figures may be higher than what was envisaged.
Meanwhile, Chairman of the Oyigbo Local Government Area, Gerald Oforji has called on the authorities to intervene to reduce the plight of the people.
Oforji said the local government council has done the little it could but that it was not enough following the level of devastation witnessed during the explosion and subsequent fire.