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By: Oluwatosin Adesola
The Ondo State House of Assembly has given up to Tuesday next week for the Management of Chevron Nigeria Limited to appear before it or face litigation.
The Speaker, Mr Bamidele Oleyelogun gave the ultimatum while addressing stakeholders at an Ad hoc Committee level over the fire incident at Ugbo-Ilaje, Ojumole Oil well.
The decision followed the attitude of two Representatives from the Oil Company who refused to address the Committee over the presence of Journalists.
The Chevron Representatives who claimed they have no right to address the Committee in the presence of press appealed that journalists be excused, a request that was turned down by the lawmakers.
The State Commissioner for Environment, Mr Funso Ẹsan had earlier told the Committee that the Oil Company erred by neglecting the host communities and lack of commitment to the State Government.
The Commissioner noted that the state Governor, Mr Oluwarotimi Akeredolu had also fixed a meeting with the Management of Chevron Nigeria Limited which was called off till next week due to non availability of principal officers of the Company as related by their representatives.
Addressing the Committee, the spokesperson of the Representatives of Olugbo in Council, Dr Akin Akinruntan alleged Chevron of short changing the host communities in Ondo State compared to what transpired in other oil producing states.
Dr Akinruntan appealed to the Committee to intervene on the matter and ensure affected communities were adequately compensated for the damages done on the water, air and environment.
The Chairman of the House Ad hoc Committee, Prince Abayomi Akinruntan promised that the lawmakers would ensure justice is done in the interest of the affected communities and Ondo State in general.
Information from the Ojumole community indicates that the fire is still burning from the oil field for the past twenty one days.