FG kicks off Ogoni clean-up with $170m

Weekly Trust - - News - Isi­aka Wak­ili

Vice Pres­i­dent Yemi Os­in­bajo yes­ter­day at the Pres­i­den­tial Villa in Abuja presided over the sign­ing of the escrow agree­ment to draw $170m from the first tranche of the $1bn Ogoni clean-up fund­ing rec­om­mended by the United Na­tions En­vi­ron­men­tal Pro­gramme (UNEP).

The event was wit­nessed by the Min­is­ter of State for En­vi­ron­ment, Ibrahim Jib­ril, the chair­man of the Gov­ern­ing Coun­cil and the Board of Trustees of the Ogoni Trust Fund, Wale Edun,Ogoni rep­re­sen­ta­tive and mem­ber of the BoT of the Ogoni Trust Fund, God­win Ok­pabi and rep­re­sen­ta­tives of in­ter­na­tional oil com­pa­nies.

The vice pres­i­dent re­it­er­ated the present ad­min­is­tra­tion’s com­mit­ment to the trans­par­ent clean-up of Ogo­ni­land.

“I want to em­pha­sise that the fed­eral gov­ern­ment is com­mit­ted to en­sur­ing that the new vi­sion for the Niger Delta is faithfully ex­e­cuted, and the Ogoni clean-up is one of the crit­i­cal com­po­nents of the en­gage­ment. We’re told that the com­plete clean-up is one that may take a pe­riod of be­tween 25 and 30 years, and this just shows the ex­tent of the dam­age done over decades in Ogo­ni­land.”

Edun said $10 mil­lion had al­ready been dis­bursed for the ini­tial ar­range­ment for the clean-up.

“With this sign­ing, we’ll now com­mence the draw down process for $170m. The $170m will be pro­vided im­mi­nently from the first tranche of the $1bn of the Ogoni clean-up fund­ing that was rec­om­mended by the UNEP and was agreed by the au­thor­ity. This is the first tranche and rest will come over the next few years,” he said.

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