Tony Ita Etim, Port Harcourt
The Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP) has warned the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC) to steer of oil production activities in Ogoniland.
The warning was contained in a press statement signed by Bari-ara Kpalap, Media/Public Affairs Advisor of MOSOP.
According to the statement, MOSOP said it “dissociated itself from covert negotiations for the immediate commencement of oil extraction in Ogoni between the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company Limited (NPDC) and some bribed Ogoni natives”.
It “warned that the corporation will be held responsible for any crisis that may engulf the Ogoni nation”.
“MOSOP as well dissociate itself from a so-called workshop planned for Friday, June 24 by the same NPDC, intended to be used in deceiving unsuspecting Ogonis into buying into the anti-Ogoni approach. We therefore call on all sons and daughters of Ogoni not to attend the said workshop as it is against our collective interest”, MOSOP wanred.
According to MOSOP, “It is most annoying that whilst the corporate world and other friends of Ogoni are joining effort with MOSOP to ensure that the environmental injustice inflicted us is resolved; NPDC is exploiting our disadvantaged circumstances to advance a covert, capitalist agenda lacking human face. We would like to make it very clear that Ogoni oil will not be extracted now that Ogoni is in environmental grief. What is on the Ogoni card now is the clean-up of the spreading and deepening ecological footprints in the area and nothing else.”
MOOSOP stated that “it is a shame that whilst well-meaning Ogoni citizens are intensifying and concentrating efforts on how best to move the Ogoni environmental recovery process forward, a notorious Ogoni gang whose social license with the people has collapsed have been holding clandestine meetings with NPDC to negotiate through the back door, commencement of oil production in Ogoni, a highly sensitive issue that requires openness, caution and majority participation. This we consider anti-Ogoni and an affront against our collective interest and should be abated forthwith.
“MOSOP is aware that officials of NPDC nicodemously entered Ogoni last week and held secret meetings relating to oil production in Ogoni with a selected few, an approach reminiscent of the past, and which has pitched some traditional rulers and their cohorts against the rest of the community. We would thus warn Ogonis not to allow themselves to be used to cause trouble in the region,” the statement underlined.