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MOSOP to Partner HYPREP for Ogoni’s Development.

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MOSOP to Partner HYPREP for Ogoni’s Development.

By: Barikui Felix, Port Harcourt.

The Movement for the Survival of Ogoni People, MOSOP, has stated its readiness to partner with the Hydrocarbon Pollution Remediation Project, HYPREP, for the development of Ogoniland.

MOSOP President, Professor Olu Andah Wai-Ogosu stated this when he led the newly elected executives of the body to pay a courtesy visit to the Chairman, Board of Trustees of HYPREP, Dr. Mike Nwielaghi.

He said the Ogonis are in a dire situation as poverty and lack are ravaging the people, stressing that he was happy that HYPREP has come to help ameliorate the sufferings of the people. The Ogoni leader said MOSOP is ready to offer monitoring and evaluation services borne out of professionalism for the interventionist agency.

“Ogoni is in a very desperate situation like a people without leadership. Hope is gradually being lost in Ogoniland, poverty and hopelessness are seen everywhere in Ogoniland. These are part of the reasons that compelled me to get involved in the struggle twenty-five years ago, especially as an environmentalist.

“The issue of environmental rights, the issue that the Niger Delta was completely degraded, the realisation of that fact started from Ogoniland, Ogoni sons, and Ogoni martyrs, so having comeback I said I have to contribute my part to the betterment of the environment.

“I also looked at MOSOP and realized that there is a complete disconnect from the goals, mission, vision, and objectives of the struggle, so I went down to the grassroots to reinvigorate the struggle,” he said.

He added: “In course of that struggle several institutions in the Niger Delta have come to be but we don’t benefit from them such as the Niger Delta Ministry while Rivers State continues to be a one-city state and Bori since 1967 continues to remain the way it is while other cities that were in the same situation with Bori is now developed. Something needs to be done and thank God we now have an institution like HYPREP that can help to revive that situation now. We are being focused, we are looking at how to galvanise our capacities, how do we synergise with what we have to change the situation, so I do not doubt the ability of this leadership to redirect the focus of the struggle.”

“I have come here to tell you that we are ready to do whatever we can to support you and HYPREP to develop Ogoni because when I saw the Centre of Excellence, the Cottage Hospitals, and others, I know it is an excellent project.

“MOSOP is ready to provide monitoring services, MOSOP is ready to provide evaluation services to be borne out of professionalism not out of sentiments and emotions because we want HYPREP to be that test case where other environmentally depressed nations of the world can come to take a cue from”.

Wai-Ogosu said the new leadership of the body is ready to change the Ogoni narratives and to redirect the struggle for a better Ogoniland.

He also informed the HYPREP BOT Chairman that the new executives have lots of programmes in place to galvanise development in Ogoniland while stating that plans have started to reconcile aggrieved Ogonis.

In his response, Dr. Mike Nwielaghi appreciated the MOSOP leadership for the visit and the desire to partner HYPREP for Ogonis’ development.

He urged the MOSOP President to adhere to the constitution of the body and to continue on the part of reconciliation.

“The problem that has bedeviled MOSOP today is partly because we did not heed it’s constitution, if we did, there wouldn’t have been any need for the rhetorics and problems that bedeviled this organisation, that’s why I’m happy that you are on reconciliation, you must mend fences.

“Let’s not pretend that all is well. Take steps to address those issues that seem to divide us. I have listened to you and we’ll support you, the Governing Council has been robbed of your contributions over the years,” he said.

Nwielaghi said the proper time for the leadership of MOSOP to reach out to Ogoni stakeholders is now, urging the leadership not to be tired.

He further urged MOSOP to continue to engage HYPREP in areas it feels they aren’t doing rightly.

“As a board, if you feel there are things that we need to do right, feel free to talk to us. I assure you that Ogoni will be a place everybody will be proud of,” he stated.

He advised the new executives to see their work as a service to the Ogoni people while calling on Ogonis to own up and protect HYPREP facilities in their communities.

“You must be very serious. Ogoni is not a place to joke with. HYPREP is our collective project, we must not badmouth it. As of today, HYPREP has over one hundred and sixty projects scattered all over. So all we need to do is to try to ensure that it is accomplished.

“I want to advise that we should protect the projects and facilities that are in and around our communities. Also, litigations are giving us a serious concern, litigation’s by Ogoni people over this project has been terrible,” the BOT chairman stated.

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