The Olujimi of Warri, Chief Mrs. Ebiyemi Omatseye, has questioned moves for Nigeria’s energy transition void of community involvement.
“We in the oil-producing area of Nigeria have been seriously and negatively impacted. Any attempt at just transition needs to impact the lives of the people in the local community positively,” the traditional leader said this while speaking during an event on the sideline of the ongoing 28th session of the UNFCCC’s Conference of Parties (COP28) in Dubai, UAE.
The event, titled “Centring Impacted Communities in Nigeria’s Energy Transition”, was organised by the Shehu Musa Yar’Adua Foundation in collaboration with the Health of Mother Earth Foundation (HOMEF) and the Nigeria Council on Climate Change (NCCC).
Building on the background that the Niger Delta, a pivotal hub in the global energy framework, has been a predominant fossil fuel provider for over 60 years.
Chief Omatseye said, “It is time to make sure a positive influence is felt in the Niger Delta region. In Warri Kingdom, we are 95% riverine and our livelihood depends on these resources.”
While hopeful about the success of Nigeria’s Energy Transition plan, the traditional ruler expresses firm concerns about the fate of the people and the Niger Delta community providing most of the fossil fuel and the resources needed for a transition.
“We know that oil is not going to last forever and soon these polluting companies will move on. Where do we (the people of the community) go from there?” she asked.
By ‘Seyifunmi Adebote