Shell says an investigation into crude oil from Peremabiri flow station in Bayelsa to unravel the cause and volume of oil discharged is underway.
The Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria (SPDC) has confirmed the 3 October oil spill from its facilities at Peremabiri community in Southern Ijaw Local Government Area (LGA) of Bayelsa.
Michael Adande, the spokesperson for SPDC, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Friday that a Joint Investigative Visit (JIV) to the incident site to unravel the cause and volume of oil discharged was underway.
JIV is a statutory probe comprising representatives of the operator, host community, and regulatory agencies that generate a report to show the cause and extent of pollution after every spill is reported.
“A government-led Joint Investigation Team is currently on a Joint Investigation Visit to the site of the incident to determine the cause and the impact of the incident,” Mr Adande said.
Plea for clean-up
Meanwhile, the people of Peremabiri have appealed to all tiers of government to prevail on the SPDC to immediately embark on a clean-up exercise at the oil spill site.
NAN reports that the leak from the Diebu Creek Flow station, operated by SPDC in Peremabiri, discharged a yet-to-be-ascertained volume of crude oil to adjoining areas of the community and the Nun River.
Alagoa Morris, Programme Manager, Environmental Right Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria (ERA/FoEN), in a reaction, said the oil leak had polluted the ecosystem.
He said the resultant pollution from the oil spill has adversely affected the predominantly farming and fishing settlements along the banks of River Nun.
Morris, who is also the Technical Adviser to the Bayelsa Governor on Environment, commended the peaceful disposition of the victims.
He urged the regulatory agencies to ensure that SPDC immediately carries out the required clean-up process to save the indigenes of the Peremabiri community from economic and health challenges.
Yenimi Timipre, a farmer affected by the leakage, lamented that her fishing gear was rendered useless by crude stains.
Also, the Deputy Woman Leader of Peremabiri Community, Favour Morgan, lamented that the spill has destroyed their fishing nets, traps, and crops and polluted the whole aquatic environment, and demanded succour.
“This oil spill has thrown the Peremabiri people into despair. We are into farming and fishing as our means of livelihood and the toxic oil from Shell’s oil field has damaged our livelihood sources.
“We are helpless and in dire need of intervention by way of relief and succour to farmers and fishermen,” Mrs Morgan said.