By Cletus Opukeme, Warri
Some ex-generals of Niger Delta agitation have said that federal government has done well by giving the pipeline surveillance contract to former MEND leader, High Chief Government Ekprmupolo aka Tompolo, saying that Tompolo with his vast knowledge in Niger Delta region will curb the menace of pipe vandalism, illegal bunkery which has caused adverse health harzard of uncontrollable pollution in the region.
The phase 3 ex-agitators in a press statement signed on behalf of them by Gen. Olomoro G. Ebiokpolade and Gen. John Sawyer said ” Niger Delta people especially ex-agitators should not raise an eye brow over federal government award of montly N4billion pipeline surveillance to our highly respected leader Tompolo. That he deserved the job and we are calling on other Niger ex-agitators to give their support for the success of the project.
“We want to equally buttress some facts as media report had earlier highlighted that the contract for the region was earlier awarded to Ocean
Marine Solution Limited owned by Late Captain Hosa Okunbo, the father-in-law to Olu of Warri. A company which the Olu of Warri is now the substantive Chairman. No one raised a voice for almost seven years before it is now revisited.
” The newly awarded contract to Tompolo does not cover the entire region but specific areas, some
parts of Delta and most parts of Rivers and Bayelsa states are not inclusive, especially Nembe to Bonny which was awarded to another company…
“.The Olu of warri will be handling majority of Rivers and Akwa-Ibom states. Acccordingto a media report contract amounts to N48bn per annum which translates to N4bn per month,whereas that ot the Olu of warri was reportedly awarded at at a net sum of N11.5b monthly and N138.7b per annum.
”Despite these facts, Tompolo is engaging stakeholders, running an all inclusive operation.
“Let us bear in mind that Tompolo is the only outstanding leader that we have and therefore everyone should accord him with that respect. We must alue what we have. If this contract were to be given to some leaders it would have been pocketed and sealed nobody would have known about it but Tompolo brought out his call everyone across from the niger Delta States to come and benefits and work together knowing fully well that that you can only covers part of akwa ibom bayelsa River State and so on.
”Let us all be guided and let love lead as several contractors have been awarded, we are yet to see
engagements.. ‘Tompolo is building a transparent system that will see all communities with oil or a pipeline benefit from it'” The ex-agitators said.
” Our recommendations as follow;
Citing of Modular tefineries by Federal & State Governments and sons of the Niger Delta.
”…if Modular Refineries are cited all over Niger Delta, the benefits will include availability of petroleum products, reduction in the importation of petroleum products, creation of thousands of
jobs, controlled system of crude oil Refining, conflict resolution between government and people
engaged in “illegal oil Bunkering” , reduction in environmental pollution due to such Bunkering
activities, no more loss of lives youths engaged in Bunkering, economic gain in the form of foreign
exchange, poverty reduction.
”Termination of oil haulage by vessels in the INLAND WATER WAYS in the Niger Delta:
…..with the pipelines secured and presence of modular Refineries, the Haulage of crude by
vessels in our waterways can be Terminated. When this happens, many environmental issues will
automatically cease, economic activities fishing communities can now be sustained…
– Routine maintenance of pipelines and its attendant accessories:
“Pollution arising from pipelines not properly maintained are far more than those vandalism and other sources….
– Removal of all obsolete and Non-Operational oil Facilities including Pipelines:. We want all obsolete and Non-Operational oil installations removef. It is an urgent call….
”Deliberate compliance to existing pollution control protocols by operators in the oil and gas sector.
“Finallyy, we are demanding, unequivocally, A Total and Comprehensive CLEAN-UP of ALL polluted sites in the Niger Delta” They added.