20th April, 2020
Okafor Ofiebor/ Port-Harcourt
Residents of Ibuluya Ama area in Okrika Local Government Council area in Rivers State have raised alarm over the leakage from the pipelines of Nigerian National Petroleum Company, NNPC, which has been noticed for over a week now.
Commissioner for Environment in Rivers State, Dr Igbiks Tamuno who visited the site of the leakage along with Philemon Kingolo, Chairman of Okrika local government area in Rivers State, has confirmed an NNPC pipeline leakage at Ibuluya Ama in Okrika Local Government Area.
The main cause of the pipeline leakage has not been ascertained whether it was system failure or vandalization by oil thieves.
The Commissioner of Environment Igbiks Tamuno was briefed by the Chairman of the Council that representatives of NNPC have since ensured that the leaked pipelines are repaired, and security agents cordoned off the affected area to avoid any fire outbreak.
Massive enlightenment and sensitizations by the department of Health, Safety and Environment (HSE) of NNPC are currently being carried out in the host community warning them to desist from scooping from leaked petroleum products form so as to avoid an explosion.
Meanwhile, the Executive Chairman of Okrika LGA, Philemon Kingolo is calling on Federal Government and NNPC to do the needful by replacing all damaged pipes urgently to avoid explosion.
Philemon Kingolo, while inspecting the pipeline leakages owned by NNPC, expressed displeasure at efforts so far taken by the company.
He said that the company mere sprayed chemicals on the leakage site.
He regretted that Okrikans have experienced four leakages at different times in less than two years, and advised citizens fetching the Premium Motor Spirit, PMS, (Petrol) to stay clear to avoid loss of lives.
Okrika Community is one of the numerous oil producing Communities in Rivers State and co-host to NNPC Pipeline Products Marketing Company, PPMC, that has a network of crude oil and refined petroleum products pipelines crisscrossing the community.