Fishermen in Ibeno, Akwa Ibom, have urged Mobil Producing Nigeria (MPN) Unlimited to urgently clean up the oil spill which occurred from its facility in the area on April 19.
The spokesperson of the fishermen, Mr Johnson Harry, made the call at Ibeno in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday.
The spill from MPN’s Qua Iboe Terminal (QIT), Ibeno, discharged crude into the Atlantic shoreline, covering 15.7 kilometres in Mkpanak and environs.
Harry said that since the spillage occurred, the company had yet to commence the clean-up.
He urged the company to ensure that the clean-up was thorough and met international standards.
The spokesperson said that the spill had caused some damage to the ecosystem and had deprived fishermen in the area of their only source of livelihood.
“We want MPN to do a satisfactory job this time. We don’t want a situation where they will engage some local companies or a group of youths just to pick water sachets along the shoreline.
“Right from the 2008 oil spill till date, there has not been any proper clean-up of spill site by MPN; I doubt whether they will act differently this time,” he said.
On his part, Mr Ogechukwu Udeagha, MPN’s Manager (Media and Communication), said that the multi-national had “observed intermittent patches of an oil-based substance along the shoreline of Ibeno beach.”
Udeagha added: ”Internal investigations indicate that the NNPC/MPN joint venture facilities have been operating normally. We continue to work with the relevant authorities to investigate the possible source.
”An emergency response team was immediately dispatched by joint venture operations to the shoreline and samples of the substance collected for fingerprint analysis to determine its source.’’
He further said that the company was committed to maintaining safety, health and environmental standards in its operations.