Johnson Agbonayinma, Chairman of House of Representatives Special Committee on Nigeria/USA Parliamentary Relations, has expressed concern over the exclusion of relevant ministries, departments and agencies in the ongoing clean-up of Ogoniland.
According to the terms of the contract, the Nigerian government and IOCs are expected to pay the sum of US$1 billion to the contractors in the next five years.
While giving update on the exercise during the pre-World Environment Day, Ibrahim Jubril, Minister of Environment disclosed that over 400 contractors indicated interest in the remediation exercise in response to the advertisement placed in April 2018.
Agbonayinma (APC-Edo) who expressed the concern during a chat with select Legislative Correspondents in Abuja, however urged Federal Government to ensure the inclusion of the Research and Development Department of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) without further delay,
“It is out of place for the ministry to award contracts of that magnitude without including the research and development of NNPC that is the indigenous company.
“If NNPC is incompetent to perform that role, then the Federal Government should as a matter of urgency dissolve the agency because it is unheard for outsiders who don’t understand our terrain to carry out such an exercise.
“If we must carry out the exercise as it is, after all, contracts have been awarded without our NNPC; then there must be an immediate review of the contracts as Nigerians may not know how it was conducted,” the Edo lawmaker said.
Agbonayinma further observed that “the ministry did not weigh the implications of not including the agency and that is why the House will urgently look into the matter immediately we resume from our recess if nothing is done before then.
“I consider the action a slap on all well-meaning Nigerians to view the action of the Ministry as highly misplaced priority,” he argued.