The Bayelsa State Government has lamented that the state experienced over 1000 oil spills in 2014 alone.
The state government also expressed concern over the menace of the oil spills and gas flaring perpetrated by multinational oil companies during exploration without carrying out the necessary remediation a activities.
The state Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Kemeasuode Wodu, stated this when he led a delegation from the state to the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr Ibe Kachikwu in Abuja.
According to a statement issued by Wodu, in Yenogoa at the weekend, statement, the visit was, among other things, intended to acquaint the Minister with the various challenges the government and people of the state have been grappling with as a result of the activities of oil companies.
The commissioner also said the oil companies failed to pay compensation to the affected communities, pointing out that, on July 9, 2015 a facility belonging to the Nigerian AGIP oil company in its Clough Creek, Azuzuama pipeline exploded, killing 14 persons, including a staff of Bayelsa State Ministry of Environment.
“AGIP has continued to pollute a canal within its facility in Brass despite several representations by the community and state government,” he stated.
The statement also quoted Kachikwu, as saying that the Federal Government would soon convene a forum of stakeholders that will include all multi-national oil companies, the governments of oil-producing states and the leaders of oil-bearing communities in the Niger Delta to holistically look into the impact of oil exploration on the area.
The minister also promised that he will personally take a tour of oil facilities in the Niger Delta region, along with the chief executives of oil companies, so as to have a proper assessment of the challenges of oil production and its impact on the entire area.
By Timothy Enietan-Matthews….
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