On November 8, 2017, SACA visited the Oruma (Yiba-Ama) community in Kolo Creek again, following a report of further spread of the Odau spill which impacted some farmlands in Oruma. We first went to the palace of the king of the clan, King Wafebiama Amakiri, where we had a meeting with him.
King Amakiri told us that he got the information that Shell was coming for a JIV but he was yet to see them. He wondered why SPDC was carefree about them, attributing it to the peaceful disposition of their community. He also informed us that there was an on-going court case between them (Yiba-Ama community) and SPDC in The Hague.
SACA team had earlier visited the spill site for the 3rd time, on October 24, 2017 (first and second being in January and in June 2017 respectively), to see if it had been cleaned up as promised by the company. But it was not. On that other occasion, we met the Head of (Community) Administration, Chief Ogidi and Mr. Olodi Chukwuma, in the king’s palace.
The community leaders lamented the refusal of Shell to come and clean up the spill. They told SACA that they were not the cause of the spill, neither did the spill occur in their land, but that the spill flowed from another community (in Rivers State) into theirs, polluting their waters and their farmlands.
They accused the company staff of colluding with law enforcement agencies to carry out the bunkering activities that resulted in the spills, and urged SACA to mount more pressure on the company to come and cleanup the mess as it had made their rivers, which they depended on for domestic purposes, unusable.