By Timi Black
Angry Ijaw youths under the axis of the Egbema Youth Council, (EYC),in Warri North Local Government Area of Delta State, have shut down oil facilities of OML 40 in Ogbeti-okun Oil Field, a facility belonging to NPDC/Elcrest Joint Ventures over what they described as marginalization and subjugation.
The protesting youths stormed the said facilities on Wednesday morning and shut down oil operations of the companies.
According to the President-General of Egbema Youth Council, Comrade Ebidouwei Messiah Miyenpirigha, the oil operations of NPDC/Elcrest in OML 40 have damaged and polluted the waterways, airspace and lands without any remediation for over 18years of operation, noting that the oil giants are wicked and heartless.
The protesters carried placards with various inscriptions, such as: “NPDC/Elcrest must recognise oil bearing communities as host,” “We want women and youths employment,” “NPDC/Elcrest must implement GMoU among host communities”, “We are Marginalize and treated with disdain”, and others.
The aggrieved host communities youths said Elcrest/NPDC has been operating in the area since 2013 without any host benefit, adding that they are not recognized as host communities, no GMoU, no medical care, no employment, no light, potable water to drink etc.
Acccording to the protesters, they will occupy the facilities until officials of the companies see need to address their concerns.
It would be recalled that the Egbema youth Council, EYC, had in their last meeting on August 30, 2021, issued the ultimatum for the operating joint ventures companies of NPDC/ Elcrest to address their 7-point demands within 14 days, failing which they promised to occupy their locations and shut down their operations in the area.
However, the ultimatum was suspended on September 9, 2021 following the intervention of the Local Government Council, Chairman, Hon. Smart Asekutu.