Estimations show that so far, out of the $200 million expected from International Oil Companies (IOCs), about N42.1 billion ($117 million) has been deposited into the London escrow account of the Standard Chartered Bank.
In a speech given by the Programme Manager of the Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC), Kolawole Banwo, in Lagos yesterday, he said the sum was exclusive of the $10 million provided by Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) to the Hydrocarbon Pollution Restoration Project (HYREP) for initial administrative costs.
The funds raised are part of the $1 billion required to effectively clean-up the entire oil spill areas in Ogoni land, as calculated in a report released by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), about the land in August 2011.
Speaking on the report, Banwo said,
“Sequel to the ground-breaking ceremony for the Integrated Contaminated Soil Management Centre in February 2017 performed in Bori by the Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, federal government had incorporated the Ogoni Trust Fund and Escrow Account opened in Standard Chartered Bank of London for the board of trustee of HYPREP and credited with $177m in April -August 2018.”
History of Ogoni land
Ogoni land is situated in an area east of Port Harcourt in Rivers State. Archaeological and linguistic evidence suggests the Ogoni have inhabited the Niger Delta for up to 500 years.
The Ogoni are an agricultural and fishing society, living in close-knit rural communities in one of the most densely populated areas of Africa.
Ogoni land consists of six kingdoms: Babbe, Eleme, Gokana, Ken-Khana, Nyo-Khana, and Tai.
Pollution in the Niger Delta has led to a decimation of the natural fauna and is one of the reasons behind militancy in the area. This has often led to attacks on oil installations, and a corresponding decline in oil revenue. Revenue from the oil sector, form a large chunk of government earnings.