Bayelsa community rejects Shell compensation plan, demands impact assessment report

The people of Amazor Community in Ekeremor Local Government Area of Bayelsa State who were affected by the May 2018 Trans Ramos Pipeline Oil Spillage have rejected plans by the management of Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) to pay compensation to the community.

The community demanded that a Post-spill Impact Assessment be carried out to fully ascertain the extent of damage done.

This was made known in a press release made available to newsmen by the Chairman, Chiefs and Elders Council of Amazor Community, Chief (Dr.) Gari Suwa, on Wednesday.

Gari insisted that until the report of the assessments carried out by Damage Assessment conducted by National Oil Spill Detection and Remediation Agency (NOSDRA), the community forbids Shell to continue with the compensation plan.

He said, “I was surprised that my community chairman and his attorney were among those SPDC invited in January and May 2019 to discuss compensation, while we were awaiting the release of the report of the PSIA and damage assessment carried out and concluded by NOSDRA with the full participation of SPDC in December 2018”.

While expressing his disappointment with the Amazor Community Chairman, he said, “unilaterally and without consultation with the Traditional Head, Chiefs, Elders and the good people of Amazor Community to accept compensation term even though “he was part and parcel of the 11/9/2018.

“The resolution was to the effect that the payment of compensation in respect of the SPDC spillage shall be based on the PSIA and Damage Assessment already conducted and concluded by NOSDRA, and not by SPDC’s dictated compensation that was based on SPDC’s JIV Report,” he added.

He added that the Amazor Community shall only accept compensation based on the result of the PSIA and Damage Assessment Report. “

“The 11/9/2018 resolution was the outcome of agitations from communities around River Ramos Area following SPDC’s guided Joint Investigation Visit with some government agencies that excluded several communities that were impacted by the 17th- 18th May, 2018 Trans Ramos Pipeline Oil Spillage.

“NOSDRA in consequence of the agitations summoned a meeting of SPDC and the polluted communities at Abuja where the 11/9/2018 resolution was reached for NOSDRA to carry out a comprehensive PSIA and Damage Assessments to ascertain the extent and damage caused by the said spillage.”

By Babatunde Alao….

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