President Muhammadu Buhari has ordered the commencement of the environmental clean-up of Ogoniland in the Niger Delta region, even as he inaugurated the Governing Council of the Hydrocarbon Pollution Restoration Project (HYPREP) as well as the Board of Trustees for the Trust Fund.
This was one of the actions which the President approved on Wednesday at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, aimed at fast-tracking the long-delayed implementation of the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) Report on the environmental restoration of Ogoniland.
According to a statement from the special adviser to the President on media and publicity, Femi Adesina, the President’s actions, which are in tandem with his avowed commitment to working for the development and well-being of all Nigerians, were also based on recommendations to him by the Executive Director of UNEP, the UNEP Special Representative for Ogoniland, Permanent Secretaries of the Federal Ministries of Environment and Petroleum Resources, and other stakeholders, include the amendment of the Official Gazette establishing the HYPREP to reflect a new governance framework comprising a Governing Council, a Board of Trustees and Project Management.
The President further approved that the HYPREP Governing Council should be composed as follows:
- Ministry of Petroleum Resources (One Representative)
- Federal Ministry of Environment (One Representative)
Impacted States (Rivers)
- One Representative Oil Companies & NNPC
- 4 Representatives Ogoniland
- 2 Representatives United Nations System
- One Representative Secretariat Headed by Project Manager
President Buhari also approved the composition of a Board of Trustees for the HYPREP Trust Fund as follows:
- Federal Government (One Representative)
- NNPC (One Representative)
- International Oil Companies (One Representative)
- Ogoniland (One Representative)
- United Nations System (One Representative)
The statement from Adesina said that after a meeting held on the directive of President Buhari, it was also agreed that a contribution deposit of $10 million will be made by stakeholders within 30 days of the appointment of members of the Board of Trustees for the Trust Fund who will be responsible for collecting and managing funds from contributors and donors.
It said that a new implementation template has also been evolved at the instance of President Buhari.