Yenagoa - The
National Oil Spills Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA) has restated the
need to make oil bearing communities part of the Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR)
programme to tackle pipeline vandalism.
This is contained in a statement issued on Friday by Mr Henshaw Ogbuike, NOSDRA’s
Head of Public Affairs.
The statement said that the community-based DRR workshop held in Port Harcourt
on Thursday was to underscore the fact that pipeline vandalism was a threat in
the Niger Delta.
It said that crude oil spilled into the environment due to the failure of
equipment used by the oil companies.
According to the statement, prevention of such development should involve the
companies, government and oil producing communities.
The statement said that previous efforts at combating the menace, which
excluded the oil bearing communities, had recorded limited success.
"The DRR plan was developed by the agency to incorporate and sustain an
interface with stakeholders that hitherto have not been effectively engaged in
the effort to curb pipeline vandalism.
Also read: Nigeria loses N8bn to gas pipeline vandalism
"While it is true that crude oil is spilled into the environment due to
equipment failure, pipeline vandalism by unscrupulous elements also contributes
largely to the menace, resulting in adverse socio-economic, health and
"The significance of this occasion cannot be over- emphasised; the DRR plan
will be community-driven, community-implemented and community-monitored.
"DRR plan is a community-evaluated project in which the host and transit
communities, in collaboration with relevant stakeholders, hold themselves
responsible for the advocacy and protection of the immediate environment,’’ it
The statement quoted the Head, Remediation, Shell Petroleum Development Company
(SPDC), Prof. Akuro Adoki, as saying that pipeline vandalism was a very serious
issue with consequences on the country’s development.
Adoki lamented that it was worse at a time when low oil price was already
impacting negatively on the nation’s foreign exchange earnings.
He, however, commended NOSDRA for the sustained interest in oil spill
According to the statement, Gov. Nyesom Wike of Rivers charged oil-producing
communities to police their areas against pipeline vandalism and its
"Majority of the 1,900 reported cases of oil spills in Rivers were caused by
vandalism, while a small percentage was due to equipment failure.
"Oil companies have no equipment to immediately detect oil spill,’’ he was
quoted as saying, urging the communities to assist the companies with
information on spills.
The statement quoted the governor as saying that Rivers government was ready to
partner with oil companies and NOSDRA to tackle the menace.