Warri — ANGRY villagers from Diebiri and Batan communities in Delta State have shut down Batan flow station in OML 42, operated by the Nigeria Petroleum Development Company, NPDC, a subsidiary of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC over compensation and other disagreements with the company.
Vanguard learnt that the action of the communities crippled the operations of the company in the area, as workers were not working, while the wellheads and locations were affected.
Chair of Diebiri Governing Council, Mr. Samuel Ako, who confirmed the shutdown of the company by the communities said, "Our action was occasioned by NPDC's failure to pay compensation, carry out clean-up, remediation and re-vegetation of our environment arising from the equipment failure oil spill of July 5th 2012."
"The company also refused to sign Memorandum of Understanding with us on agreed issues despite the notice given them by the community. This is what led to the shutting down of the down of operations in Batan Flow Station on 23rd February 2013 by the Diebiri and Batan communities."
His words, "NPDC instead of dialoging with the communities involved to resume operations, have taken different steps to cause divide and rule, disunity among leaders and the people of Diebiri and Batan communities.".
He also said, "There is also threat to deal with leaders with security agents", adding, "We do not want to experience another crisis in this part of the Niger Delta region, occasioned by oil companies, that is why we are urging the government to intervene".
Mr. Ako said the community, yesterday, notified the Delta Waterways Security Committee, DWSC, Warri, of the development and urged the committee to call NPDC to order.
A source told Vanguard, yesterday, that the committee would step into the matter.
Vanguard gathered that NPDC management held a meeting with some persons from the communities, but efforts to get its officials to speak with this reporter proved abortive, as they declined to answer calls and respond to text message.