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allAfrica.com: Nigeria: MOSOP Threatens to Drag Shell Before EFCC

This Day (Lagos)
January 13, 2007
Posted to the web January 13, 2007

Ahamefula Ogbu
Port Harcourt

The Movement for the Survival of Ogoni People (MOSOP) yesterday threatened to drag Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) before the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for economic sabotage over their alleged setting of oil wells in Ogoniland on fire.

Reacting to the allegation by SPDC that Ogonis were not allowing them access to oil wells to put out fires reported there, MOSOP countered that the Anglo-Dutch oil company was blackmailing them.
 
The statement issued through their Information Officer, Mr. Bari-ara Kpalap, alleged that it was such untruth peddled by SPDC that prompted the late General Sani Abachi to embark on a geonicide against them.

The apex Ogoni body said that they were even worried by the incessant fires reported only in areas that the Oil giant has been embarking on remediation exercise which made them to conclude that the fires were a systematic destruction of the wells by Shell.

Shell had alleged that Ogonis in Bomu, the host community of Wells 41 and 51 refused their people access to enable them put out a fire that was noticed there to which MOSOP is contesting it as lies.

“MOSOP cconsiders the SPDC tendency as ignoble and cheap blackmail brazenly emplaced to cast Ogoni in bad light and sway sympathy from the people who are daily passing through acknowledged [pains inflicted upon us by the firm via its reckless corporate behaviour. The Ogoni people having discovered that Shell under the guise of so-called remediation and putting out fires has been killing oil wells in the area have insisted on consultation, adequate and effective participation and transparency.
 
“Shell has been uncomfortable with this and had instead criminally resorted to blackmailing our people. Facts abound that local communities are deeply aware of the implication of the incident on our helpless environment and security of life and would not refuse any genuine process of remedying the situation”, they said.

Continuing, the statement said, “MOSOP has evidence that agents of SPDC have been responsible for the wellhead and pipeline fires in Ogoni with the company actually providing neccessary logistics. Interestingly, these ugly incidents have been occuring in areas where Shell controversial remediation exercises are being carried out”.

MOSOP opined that the activities of SPDC should be viewed from the angle of economic sabotage of the country’s reasources because of the mooted ideas of allocating the fields to another oil company so that any firm taking over from them would meet burnt wells.
 
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