Warri — Activities at the Warri administrative office of Chevron Nigeria Limited(CNL) came to a standstill yesterday following a protest embarked upon by women and youths from Ekpan Community in Uvwie Local Government Council of Delta State, which resulted in the dumping of two coffins in front of the gate.
Besides, the protesters, who came with juju priests, set up a shrine and slaughtered a chicken and goat to appease the gods, and sprinkled the blood on the coffins draped in red.
They were also armed with machetes , pots and other traditional paraphernalia to draw attention and further demostrate that they were on a very serious mission.
Staff of the American oil firm, holed up in their offices as nobody was allowed to go in or come out, even as security operatives , including the mobile policemen and Joint Task Forces (JTF), just took some distance away from the scene and watched proceedings which was largely peaceful.
The protesters chanted anti-establishment songs with various placards depicting their grievances against the oil giant, which they claimed has refused to honour the agreement reached with the community since 2001.
Some of the placards read, "Chevron , We Want Real Development", "We Want Our Global Memorandum of Understanding (GMoU) Signed Now", Chevron , Stop This Marginalisation", among others.
The oil company and representatives of the community, met at the Government House Annex , Warri, to sort out the differences, but the parley ended in a stalemate, prompting a fresh meeting which was be for fixed today in the same venue to be chaired by the Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan.
The Chairman of Ekpan Development Committee, Franklin Akemu, who led the protest, decried the poor treatment meted out by Chevron to its host, Ekpan Community.