The Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP) says the failed Ogoni cleanup exercise under the management of the Hydrocarbon Pollution Remediation Project (HYPREP) has received a total of US$350,000,000 (Three Hundred and Fifty Million U.S. Dollars) since 2017 without anything to show for it.
Lamenting the corruption and looting going on in HYPREP during a briefing in his office in Bori, recently President of MOSOP, Fegalo Nsuke said it was unfortunate that an overwhelming $350million, an estimated NGN128,000,000,000 (One hundred and twenty eight billion Naira) meant for the cleanup has been largely misappropriated due to the massive corruption in HYPREP.
The MOSOP President said the Ogoni people still drink polluted water, there is no plan to compensate people whose lands and livelihood sources have been destroyed, there is no plan to construct the Center of Excellence as training center to build the capacity of Ogonis to participate in the cleanup exercise as recommended by UNEP and HYPREP does not have any plan to build an Integrated Soil Management Center to handle the contaminated soil and wastes from the spill sites.
While describing HYPREP as a hoax and a looting spree, Nsuke said all of the support structures including the Center of Excellence and the Integrated Soil Management Center which were recommended in the UNEP report were supposed to be in place before the commencement of work, sadly, they are not there.
The MOSOP president condemned the vested interests of the managers of HYPREP who swiftly approved contracts to unqualified firms without addressing the fundamental emergencies raised in the UNEP report.
HYPREP has received $350million and we cannot get any benefits from the cleanup programme, not even water to drink, they have refused to pay for the crops and farmlands they destroyed, they want us to die while they prepare grounds for Shell to resume oil production in Ogoni, Nsuke said yesterday.
The MOSOP President said the work of HYPREP ought to be visible and does not need media hype to become known to the people. He noted that the looting in HYPREP is so monumental and glaring that HYPREP's habit of using paid promotions to cover her failures can no longer be sustainable.
He said what HYPREP has done to the Ogoni cleanup funds is similar to what Shell did to the Ogoni environment. Shell destroyed the environment through pollution and HYPREP has failed to clean it up despite being so strongly funded.
He further said HYPREP is not committed to an honest implementation of the UNEP report and has no plan for the success of the cleanup programme noting that the UNEP report is very logical and simplified on the implementation process.
According to Nsuke, the UNEP report states clearly that the implementation should commence with the emergency measures including water provision, a health audit (not to give pain relief like paracetamol to people). Then we were to have an Integrated Soil Management Center to handle the contaminated wastes and the Center of Excellence for capacity building. All of these are not in place in Ogoni. All HYPREP is doing are in deviation from the recommendations of the UNEP report.
Nsuke insisted that even the extremely naive administrator saddled with the responsibility to implement the UNEP report will take what is labelled an "emergency" very seriously. He regretted that in the case of HYPREP, emergencies like water provision and health care are being jettisoned. HYPREP has instead focused on wasteful expenditure, and self enrichment of the cleanup managers rather than a diligent implementation of the UNEP report.