Acting President Yemi Osinbajo has revealed that the Ogoni Clean-Up project flagged off in 2016 will cost $1billion and the funds will be provided by Shell Petroleum Development Company.
Osinbajo made this known during an interactive Town Hall meeting with the people of Niger Delta in Port Harcourt Rivers State.
He said the governing structure for the clean-up has been established, and a chief executive appointed by the Governing Council.
According to him, on February 16, the council will perform a ground breaking ceremony for the construction of an integrated Contaminated Soil Management Centre, provided for in the UNEP Report.
“On the same day the project for demonstrating technologies for the clean-up, will be launched at selected sites in the four local government areas of Ogoniland”, he said.
The visit to Port Harcourt will be Osinbajo’s third visit to the region, as part of the Buhari administration’s policy to engage with the leadership and people of Nigeria’s oil producing communities, “to hear them, to seek to better understand their problems and concerns first hand and to offer to these communities in the Niger Delta, a new vision and a new compact”.
Osinbajo, as an emissary of President Buhari had visited Delta and Bayelsa states.
The Acting President explained why the Buhari administration, unlike the ones before it has prioritised the clean up of Ogoniland.
“The Ogoni people… symbolise in many eyes, domestically and internationally, the previous neglect of the Niger Delta and the environmental damage that has been done to the area as we have exploited oil and gas to grow the rest of the economy.
“This is indeed why the Buhari Administration prioritised the ‘Ogoni Clean-up’ and with working with the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) and other partners to undertake this important task.”