Black Soot: Governor Wike faults method adopted by security agencies in destroying illegal refineries

Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has declared that the black soot damaging  the state's environment is mainly caused by Federal Security Agencies destroying  illegal refineries. 

Governor Wike stated that the Rivers State Government has formally approached  the Federal Government to help resolve the  challenge, without any assistance from  that quarter.

Speaking during a special appearance on Channels Television Sunrise Daily at the Government House Port Harcourt on Friday, Governor Wike said that security agencies must find alternative ways of destroying illegal refineries. 

He said: "We set up a technical committee to investigate the  black soot problem.  The committee's report indicated that  the black soot was largely a product of the destruction of illegal refineries by security agencies. 

"It is not within the purview  of the state government to control the security agencies.  Therefore, we met with them and appealed that they find  alternative ways to destroy the illegal refineries. 

"We also appealed  to the Federal Government to intervene, but so far they are yet to do anything".

The governor added: "We have prioritised  this issue, but we cannot stop the security agencies.  There must be a refined way of stopped the oil  criminals, without  damaging  the environment ".

He said that politics must be separated from governance in respect of issues that affect the people.

"We should separate politics from governance.  This issue of environmental  challenge  posed by the black soot requires  the direct intervention of the Federal Government. 

"We are working with all major stakeholders to address this challenge.  We are working with international oil companies to provide needed solutions.  The Federal  Government should as a matter of urgency intervene, because the solution is within her purview ", Governor Wike said. 

The governor explained that the Rivers State Government's Committee  has taken the fundamental steps of checking the indiscriminate burning of tyres, but the major challenge is the manner  the Security Agencies destroy illegal refineries. 

Simeon Nwakaudu,
Special Assistant to the Rivers State Governor, Electronic Media. 
9th March, 2018