Cleaning of Ogoniland begins soon:

President Muhammadu Buhari has assured the people of Niger Delta that his administration would commence the clean up of oil spill in the region in three weeks time.

Vanguard reports that the special adviser to the president on Niger Delta and coordinator of the presidential amnesty programme, Brig- General Paul Boroh (retd), made the disclosure on March 24 in Enugu state. Speaking at the commissioning of the skills acquisition and training in automobile technology and manufacturing of plastics by about 200 former Niger Delta militants under the sustainable reintegration programme in the presidential amnesty initiative, he said the clean up will start from Ogoniland.

Boroh disclosed that the skill acquisition programme was in collaboration with Innoson group, manufactures of Innoson vehicles and plastics manufacturing assembly plant, Emene, Enugu. “The clean up exercise will begin at Ogoni in three weeks time and progress to other parts of the Niger Delta region. We have gone to visit the area to assess the level of damage and a lot of people from the region will be involved in the exercise,” he said. The presidential aide, who described the facilities at Innoson Kiara academy as fantastic, said the amnesty programme has significantly achieved its main aim of restoring peace and stability in the Niger Delta region. “It has substantially achieved its core mandate of restoring peace and stabilizing the security in the Niger Delta region. Ex-militants have now been trained and graduated from formal and informal trainings.

The programme is now at its critical stage of sustainable reintegration of beneficiaries who have been trained. “Though conceived as a national response to security conditions in the Niger Delta between 2009 and 2011, it has been able to substantially meet its mandate and has been able, through its formal vocational programmes, trained approximately 17,000 beneficiaries in various skills and set up or employed more than 3,583 beneficiaries. The process is ongoing and 1,040 will conclude their refreshers and set up their own business by the end of this quarter,” he said.

The Minister of Environment, Amina Mohammed, during a courtesy visit to Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers state on March 5, said President Buhari’s administration would commence the cleanup of Ogoniland in the coming weeks. She said: “It is hoped that we will have this launch in the coming weeks and the president himself will launch the cleanup. It is really to us a turning point in the history of the struggle. Ogoniland is the first place where actions need to be – cleanup.”
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