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Ogoni Clean-Up: HYPREP Completes Complex Sites’ Characterisation, Delineation

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The Hydrocarbon Pollution Remediation Project (HYPREP) has completed the characterisation and delineation of complex and medium risk impacted sites across Ogoniland.
HYPREP’s Project Coordinator, Dr Ferdinand Giadom, who dropped this hint during a workshop in Port Harcourt on Thursday, said the characterisation and delineation were done to determine the specific characteristics of each site and extent of contamination and possible remediation actions to be taken.
According to him, the site characterisation is in line with HYPREP’s standard operating procedures on assessment.
Giadom said it was preceded by the Electric Resistivity Tomography (ERT) modality, adding that ERT is a near-surface geophysical tool for ground features and map the soil structure.
He further noted that prior to the characterisation of medium risk sites, a pilot trial was carried out at Korokoro Well 3 in Tai Local Government Area to show the effectiveness and efficiency using ERT, hand auguring and groundwater monitoring boreholes to determine the extent of contamination and the specific characteristics of the site.
“ The study showed that the site is heavily contaminated with hydrocarbon pollution in both soil and ground water samples taken from the constructed groundwater monitoring boreholes and hand augured holes,” he said.
Giadom further revealed that from the survey carried out by HYPREP on impacted sites in 2022, in which 15 medium risk sites were selected for characterisation and delineation, three out of the 15 sites have been completed and are discovered to have varying degrees of contamination both in soil and groundwater samples taken.
While further disclosing that HYPREP has commenced the implementation of the UNEP recommendations as it relates to mangrove restoration, Giadom said 50 Lots from 21 sites had been given out in the phase 1, batches 1 and 2 remediation works.
According to him, 21 lots from 12 sites were given out in the phase 1, batch 1 remediation contract while 29 Lots out of the nine sites were given out in the phase 1, batch 2 remediation contract.
At present, he said remediation works have been completed and the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA) close-out processes have been successful for 16 Lots out of the 50 Lots, stressing that all other Lots are at different stages of remediation works and close-out processes.
On the restoration of the mangrove in Ogoniland, Giadom said HYPREP had in its 2021 work plan proposed to carry out Pre-SCAT activities in affected Ogoni coastal communities in Gokana, Khana, Tai and Eleme Local Government Areas.
According to him, the SCAT Team has commenced field activities at B-Dere and K-Dere both in Gokana and assessed a total of 351 grids covering an area of about 1,416 hectares.
He said the assessed grids are along shoreline channels, mud flats and degraded mangrove platforms, contending that the workshop is intended to give HYPREP more impetus in delivering on the mandate of remediating the Ogoni environment.
On his part, the representative of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Mr. Michael Cowing commended the current leadership of HYPREP under the watch of Dr Ferdinand Giadom for adopting international best practices in the implementation of the UNEP recommendations.
Cowing, who spoke virtually, took a swipe at previous administrations of HYPREP for not adhering to the principles of transparency and accountability in the implementation of the UNEP recommendations, and advised the present leadership to learn some lessons from their short comings for future progress and development of Ogoniland.
The Director General of the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA), Mr. Idris Musa commended HYPREP for the bold initiative in its efforts to sensitise contractors and stakeholders to raise awareness on the remediation project, stressing that the Federal Government is committed to the clean-up project.
Musa said the bioremediation method which HYPREP adopted in the remediation of the less complex impacted sites in Ogoniland would continue to be relevant, “ yesterday, today and tomorrow”, assuring that NOSDRA would continue to monitor, regulate and evaluate the progress of remediation works in Ogoniland.
The workshop on Detailed Charaterisation, Remediation Strategies and Framework Development, also featured some resource persons. HYPREP’s Director of Technical Services, Prof Philip Shekwolo presented an overview on the remediation activities in Ogoniland while an international scholar, Prof Chidi Ibe presented a paper on Remediation Strategies.
The Project Director of Bodo Mediation Initiative (BMI), Mr. Erich Gundlach spoke on Shoreline Remediation; Prof. Gideon Abu of the University of Port Harcourt on Bioremediation; and Dr Bonte Mattijs on Site Specific Target Levels in Inter-Tidal Estuaries.
The representative of the Permanent Secretary of the Rivers State Ministry of Environment, Pastor Emmanuel Fienimika who is the Director in charge of the Inspectorate and Enforcement Department, commended HYPREP for the workshop, describing the HYPREP Project Coordinator as a man of action.
While expressing delight that HYPREP invited highly seasoned professionals in bioremediation techniques to serve as resource persons, Fienemika said he foresaw the generation of an enhanced operational model that would fast track the process and emphasise transparency, which are key public concerns on the remediation project.

By: Donatus Ebi

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Akeredolu will be remembered for truth, justice – Aiyedatiwa

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Gov. Lucky Aiyedatiwa of Ondo State on Wednesday said the late former Governor of the state, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, would be remembered for his good deeds, especially standing for truth and justice.

Aiyedatiwa stated this during a special court session held in honour of the late former governor at the Ondo State High Court in Akure.

He explained that the former governor used his knowledge, ebullience and capacities to defend the human peaceful existence.

Aiyedatiwa added that the deceased deeds during his life time were greatly impactful.

According to him, the deceased was after justice and rule of law.

Aiyedatiwa said that late Akeredolu was always not pleased when justice was not served.

He described the honour bestowed on the late governor as a well deserved because his life evolved around the legal profession.

“He was an achiever with success stories. He stood firm and was committed to truth and justice,” he said.

Also speaking, the Chief Judge (CJ) of the state, Justice Olusegun Odusola, said that late Akeredolu remained celebrated in death more than being alive considering a reference to his achievements and attainment in life.

Odusola said that the late governor was a courageous fighter, who faced the serious security challenges in the state with ingenious courage that had become a national model.

He stated that it was more-worthy that the late governor did not interfere with judicial activities, even when it did not favour his desires.

According to him, late Akeredolu was a man that lived with his words.

“In my last encounter with him at a time when his health was obviously failing, Arakunrin still reiterated his desire to construct a judiciary complex that will be the envy of other states in the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

“He also spoke about judges’ welfare and I wondered how a man in such a condition could still love the judiciary so much as to remember the little promises he made,” he said.

The CJ said that late Akeredolu was an outstanding legal icon and a political colossus, a man who was an exemplar of indefatigable courage, principled resistance with honesty and self-respect.

He stated that late Akeredolu would continue to be a good reference point in humanity.

In his remarks, the President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Mr Yakubu Maikyau, described the late governor as a man with keen passion to help humanity and secure peace.

Maikyau added that the deceased was a person of humility known for truth and justice, and asked the deceased family to take solace in the good deeds of the late governor.

Dignitaries present include Gov. Abdulrasak Abdulrahman of Kwara; Ondo State Deputy Gov, Olayide Adelami; Chief Olusola Oke, SAN; and APC Chairman in Ondo State, Mr Ade Adetimehin.

Others are human rights lawyer, Mr Kayode Ajulo; Ambassador Sola Iji, Speaker Ondo State House of Assembly; and former Inspector of Police, Mr Sunday Ehindero.

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Gunmen Kill Police Inspector In Rivers 

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The Rivers State Police Command said an Inspector was killed by gunmen who ambushed and attacked its men on a stop and search duty at the Eliozu Flyover in Obio/Akpo Local Government Area of the state on Wednesday night.

The spokesperson of the command, Grace Iringe-Koko, disclosed this in a statement issued yesterday.

Iringe-Koko said the gunmen who were spotted in a carton-colored Sienna bus with fully tinted glasses drove in from the Rumuodumaya axis, near Port Harcourt where they launched the offensive which claimed the officer’s life.

She, however, said the team rose to the occasion and returned fire and neutralised one of the miscreants who wore masks, but that other gang members escaped by the whisker.

The statement reads, “We are deeply saddened to announce a heinous incident that occurred on 21st February 2024, involving an attack on policemen attached to Operation Sting of the Rivers State Police Command.

“At approximately 2145hrs, while conducting routine stop-and-search at Eliozu flyover, the officers were ambushed by unidentified hoodlums operating in a carton-colored Sienna bus, with fully tinted glasses.

“The registration number of the vehicle remains unknown at this time.

“The assailants drove in from the Rumuodumaya axis, and opened fire on the police team, resulting in the tragic loss of one Inspector who valiantly gave his life in the line of duty.

“Undeterred, the police team responded with bravery, engaging the attackers and managing to neutralise one of them with a mask on his face, while the others managed to escape, potentially sustaining gunshot wounds.

“The command has launched a thorough investigation into this despicable act and has already identified the group responsible.

“Rest assured, we will relentlessly pursue these criminals and bring them to justice. No amount of intimidation will hinder our officers’ unwavering commitment to safeguarding the lives and property of the citizens.”

While noting that such acts of aggression against security forces detrimentally impact the safety and security of our entire society, she stressed that the command remains resolute in its duty to maintain peace and protect the well-being of the populace.

“The Commissioner of Police, Olatunji Disu, reiterates unequivocally that those who perpetrate violence against policemen or any citizen will face the full weight of the law.

“We urge all law-abiding citizens to continue with their daily activities without panic, as we are determined to uphold our mandate of preserving lives and property in the face of such challenges.

“We extend our deepest condolences to the family and colleagues of the fallen inspector, and we assure them that his sacrifice will not be in vain. Our resolve to serve and protect remains unwavering as we stand together against those who seek to disrupt the peace and harmony of our society”, she said.

Recall that last year, a former Divisional Police Officer of Ahoada Division, Bako Angbashim, was ambushed and killed by a cult gang.

Since the death of the cop, the command has been on his trail, with constant land and air bombardments in the various hideouts of the Iceland cult leader, even as some of his lieutenants were gunned down previously.

However, on Monday, Grace Iringe-Koko,  said intelligence reports revealed that the wanted cult kingpin was killed in a recent joint security raid in the Idu-Ekpeye community, Ahoada East Local Government Area of the State.

 

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Nigeria’s GDP Grew By 3.46% In Q4 2023  -NBS

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Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product grew by 3.46 per cent year-on-year in real terms in the fourth quarter of 2023, the National Bureau of Statistics has disclosed.

In its ‘Nigerian Gross Domestic Product Report (Q4, 2023),’ released yesterday, the NBS said the growth rate is lower than the 3.52 per cent recorded in the fourth quarter of 2022 and higher than the third quarter of 2023 growth of 2.54 per cent

It added that the service industry was responsible for the growth in the quarter.

Both the IMF and World Bank expected Nigeria’s economy to grow by 2.9 per cent in 2023.

The report read, “Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew by 3.46 per cent (year-on-year) in real terms in the fourth quarter of 2023.

“This growth rate is lower than the 3.52 per cent recorded in the fourth quarter of 2022 and higher than the third quarter of 2023 growth of 2.54 per cent.

“The performance of the GDP in the fourth quarter of 2023 was driven mainly by the Services sector, which recorded a growth of 3.98 per cent and contributed 56.55 per cent to the aggregate GDP.”

In terms of share of the GDP, industry, and the services sectors contributed more to the aggregate GDP in the fourth quarter of 2023 compared to the fourth quarter of 2022.

“The agriculture sector grew by 2.10 per cent, from the growth of 2.05 per cent recorded in the fourth quarter of 2022. The growth of the industry sector was 3.86 per cent, an improvement from -0.94 per cent recorded in the fourth quarter of 2022. In terms of share of the GDP, industry, and the services sectors contributed more to the aggregate GDP in the fourth quarter of 2023 compared to the fourth quarter of 2022. On an annual basis, GDP grew by 2.74 per cent in 2023 relative to 3.10 per cent in 2022,” the report added.

 

 

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