Ijaw youths, under the auspices of Ijaw Youth Council, Central Zone, have threatened to invade facilities of an oil major, Conoil Plc, over the company’s alleged failure to address the gas explosion at its Agulo oilfield, wells 4 and 5, in Koluama, Bayelsa State.
The Chairman, IYC, Central Zone, Tare Porri, made the threat at a press conference in Yenagoa, the state capital, on Thursday.
Porri lamented that since the explosion occurred on Monday, nothing had been done to tackle the explosion which spills had spread to other communities near Koluama, Tamazo area of Southern Ijaw Local Government Area of the state.
He said, “Today, we are very pained and as I address this press conference, Ijaw youths, especially Koluama clan, have mobilised massively to invade the Conoil facilities in that domain.
“We are, therefore, using this forum to call on the authorities of the oil company that we are giving them within the next 24 hours to send their officials to address the issue that is currently going on at oilfield, well 4 and 5 gas explosion.
“We hereby affirm that if nothing was done within the ultimatum period, Ijaw youths will have no other choice but to vent their anger at the firm’s operational sites. ”
He also said that the Central Zone had reached out to security agencies, particularly the Commissioner of Police and the Director of the Department of State Services on the happenings around that environment.
Porri rationalised that if the firm failed to remedy the situation, then Ijaw youths would interpret it to mean that the company was no longer interested in doing business in their area.
He added, “We don’t want anything to happen in Koluama community; our environment is being damaged, our people’s means of livelihood, the ecosystem, and all of that are being affected. As we speak, the only livelihood which is fishing has been drastically affeccted. For the past three days, our mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters, cannot go for fishing as the entire waterways have been contaminated. As it appears, nothing can be done by community-folks on their own because they do not have what it takes to clean up that quantum mess in the environment. Punch