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The Senate has allayed fears on the implementation of the Ogoni Clean-up project, say-ing “it is on course”.
The Chairman, Senate Committee on Environment, Senator Oluremi Tinubu, said this in Abeokuta at the recently concluded 11th National Council on Environment (NCE) meet-ing.
Senator Tinubu, who was represented by Senator Magnus Abe, assured that the senate would provide the necessary oversight for the project, adding that the Federal Govern-ment had continued to liaise with and provide updated information to the senate on the process.
The Federal Government inaugurated the Hydrocarbon Pollution Remediation project to take charge of the clean-up of Khana, Gokana, Tai and Eleme Local Government Areas in Ogoni land, Rivers in a bid to address the devastation wrought on the environment.
“The Ogoni Clean-up has been one of the major signposts of the Muhammadu Buhari-led administration and a lot of people have expressed concerns about the speed of the implementation.
“I want to use this opportunity to assure all Nigerians that Ogoni cleanup is on course and that we are closely monitoring activities in that respect.
“We understand the concerns of those who feel it is a bit slow but we want to assure them that the implementation is on and we are being briefed accordingly.
“We realise that people would have loved to see things happening immediately but they have to understand that there are frameworks, procedures and challenges of implemen-tation of programmes of that magnitude which has never be done before.
“If we are not patient, we will not be thorough and we could easily get overwhelmed by the whole thing because it is a multi-layer operation.
“It is something we have not done before because it is new and we must be careful to adopt best methods to make it happen and so people have to be patient and give all nec-essary support,” she said.
Tinubu gave assurance that the Senate through her committee was ready to partner with the Ministry of Environment and other stakeholders to provide robust legislative support and oversight on environment-friendly activities.
Earlier, the Minister of State for Environment, Mr. Ibrahim Jibril reiterated the Federal Gov-ernment’s commitment to exploring alternative sources of revenue to sustain the ongo-ing economic recovery process.
He urged the private sector to take advantage of the investment opportunities existing in the environment sector.