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1 Jul 2021

Usman A. Bello, Daily Trust (Nigeria)

Nigeria: ExxonMobil urged to fully & urgently comply with court judgement ordering it to pay compensation for oil spills

‘Group Urges Mobil to Obey Court Judgement On Oil Spillage’ 29 June 2021

The Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria (ERA/FoEN), has urged ExxonMobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited to urgently comply with the court judgement, which ordered it to pay N81.9 billion as compensation for oil spills from the company's facilities which occurred between 2000 and 2010. The Federal High Court in Abuja, had recently in a judgement given ExxonMobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited and the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) 14-days ultimatum to pay N81.9 billion to the fishing and farming communities in Ibeno Local Government Area. The affected fishing and farming communities in Akwa Ibom State, had dragged ExxonMobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited and the NNPC to court, demanding adequate compensation for several oil spills that destroyed their rivers, streams and other sources of livelihoods. ERA Executive Director, Godwin Uyi Ojo, in a statement described the judgement as a landmark judgement in the fight for environmental justice and the protection of the environment and livelihoods.

…"The judgement is also significant because payment of compensation to the victims of oil pollution will impact positively on the lives of the people of the Niger Delta suffering under the heavy burden of oil spills pollution and destruction of their livelihoods". "By this judgement, the people will l no longer resort to self-help and many communities will approach the courts with thousands of oil spills and pollution cases pending" He called on Mobil oil to ensure prompt payment of the compensation as directed by the court within 14 days and not to repeat the stance of Shell that has refused to pay the N17 billion compensation awarded by a Nigerian court to the Ejama-Ebubu community in Eleme local government area of Rivers state for oil spills that devastated their land in 2010