A frontline activist in the Niger Delta region, Chief Gani Topba, has called for the removal of the Minister of Environment, Mr. Ibrahim Jibril, over alleged failure to provide potable water to the people of Ogoni, in line with the recommendation of the United Nations Environment Program, UNEP.
Topba who is the National Coordinator of the Ken Saro-Wiwa Associates has also threatened to mobilize a nationwide protest against the Hydrocarbon Pollution Restoration Project, HYPREP, and the Federal Ministry of Environment, over the continuous delay in the commencement of the actual clean up of Ogoni.
The Activist told our correspondent in Port Harcourt that 20 deaths have been recorded in Ogoniland, as a result of drinking hydrocarbon contaminated water.
He explained that all efforts by the group to reached the Ministry of Environment as well as HYPREP have proved abortive, and even letters sent were not replied.
According to him, “This is a very clear notice to the management of HYPREP, the Minister of Environment should resign or President Buhari should just sack him because he has failed in the job he was appointed to do.
“Money was released yet water cannot be provided for the people, yet he is in the media talking, which is an insult to the people of Ogoni.
“The people are prepared and I am going to mobilize Ogoni people all over the world. After we have done a protest in Port Harcourt, we are going to also shut down the Ministry of Environment in Abuja.”
Topba who exonerated the Coordinator of HYPREP, Dr. Marvin Dekil, of any blame and describing him as a messenger, alluded that the buck stops on the Minister’s desk as he was the chairman of the governing council of Ogoni clean up.
“We have tried to communicate them, as we speak we are sending them a letter. We have sent the first letter, we have not gotten a response.
“This is going to be a second letter giving them a time bound that if they don’t heed, we are going on a nationwide protest.
“We want the removal of the Minister (of Environment) because he is the leader. He is the Chairman of the Governing Council of Ogoni clean up, he supervises HYPREP. HYPREP Coordinator is just a mere messenger, the buck stops on the Ministers desk.”
Asked about the proves on the alleged death of 20 persons in Ogoni as a result of contaminated water, Topba said, “Yes we have gotten a record of about 20 deaths as confirmed by medical doctors.”