TROUBLE is currently looming in the oil bearing community of Emede in Isoko South Local Government Area of Delta State, as some youths of the community are at daggers drawn against the management of Nigeria Petroleum Development Company, NPDC, over an oil spill which allegedly destroyed their agricultural produce.
The youths numbering over 20 on Wednesday held hostage and prevented an NPDC contractor from embarking on a cleanup exercise at an oil spill site.
It was reported that the spill occurred as a result of a vandalised crude oil pipeline located at Owhelogbo in the community.
Demanding compensation before the contractor would be allowed to embark on work at the site, the youths accused NPDC and the contractor in charge of surveillance of the pipeline of setting fire at the scene of the spill, an act they said resulted to the destruction of their agricultural produce which has been their source of livelihood.
Attempts to speak with the NPDC external relations officer, Mr. Ugo Atugboko, was unsuccessful as at press time, but the traditional ruler of the community, HRH, Johnson Egbo Ewhiri II who is in charge of the security and surveillance of the vandalised pipeline, lamented the acts of the youths describing it as barbaric.
He said: “I got news of the incident and have contacted my supervisor to ensure that the matter is resolved amicably while the contractor goes about his job of cleaning up the spill peacefully.
“As for compensation, there is a standing rule by NPDC which states that compensation should not be paid to communities where oil spill occur as a result of vandalism, hence there was no compensation to the community.”


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