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My Ifeanyi

My Ifeanyi

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Published by: Nwakudu Ifeanyi Samuel on Jun 01, 2010
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07/24/2012

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The discovery of petroleum has come with adverse environmental consequences for

the Niger-Delta. Otherwise fertile farmlands have regressively lost fertility uprooting

whole populations from the farms into an uncertain labour market. Fishermen in the

mangrove creeks and the riverine areas have not fared any better. The effluent from

industrial production and intermittent oil spillage has introduced toxicity into the

prevailing food chain and endangered aquatic life. The scenario is replicated across

the Niger-Delta in space and time.

Writing in the Guardian Newspaper of August 11, 2003, an N.G.O, Earth and Justice

highlighted a specific instance of this endemic problem thus;

“A major pipeline rupture occurred in July 9, 2003 at

Shell’s Rumuekpe-Adibawa pipeline located at Imogu,

Emohua local government of Rivers state. The spill

Spewed substantial quantity of crude oil into, nearby

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Streams, farms and surrounding environment.”

This is more or less the sordid environmental realism of the Niger-Delta. With an

ageing network of pipelines and an apparent lack of a discernible plan to introduce a

worthwhile change, one can only expect the present trend of incessant oil spillages to

continue.

A region in which several wells are located which experience intermittent oil

spillages would soon brace up to a hard choice between survival and decimation. The

slow gradual process of decimation could be activated if the faulty mechanism that is

responsible for oil spillage in one community is not detected and repaired to avert a

future recurrence. Decimation could also occur if there were no determined effort to

restore the people’s life support system, the land. This will, however, involve

concrete measures to restore aquatic life and also to restore the salubrity of farmlands

where oil spillages have occurred. These are supposedly reactive measures to address

environmental problems by which have yet to be introduced by government or

multinational oil companies in the Niger-Delta. This has become a critical interface

for consciousness-raising of a political kind.

3.7 FORMS OF VIOLENCE IN THE NIGER-DELTA

The rising wave of militancy in the Niger-Delta has since 2006 taken a new and

dynamic twist. Violence in the region has affected the host communities and the

Nigerian state in no small measure. This section seeks to analyze the various methods

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and ways that have been adopted by the Niger-Delta militants in order to achieve

their aim. The methods used by the militants are: Hostage taking and kidnapping, Oil

bunkering, Pipeline vandalization and Piracy. These would be expatiated and

explained.

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