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NAOC Protests Against Agip Oil Over Neglect And Marginalisation

Landlords to the Nigeria Agip Oil Company (NAOC) have protested alleged neglect and marginalisation by the oil firm. The protesters on the platform of Concerned Landlords of Land and Swamp Areas in collaboration with the Ijaw Youths Council Worldwide, who stormed the Head Office of Agip in Port Harcourt, alleged that they were being neglected. The protesters had placards with various inscriptions such as: "NAOC has Overstepped its Bounds; "NAOC Must Have a GMoU with Direct Owners of Oil Wells and Facilities in Land Area and Swamp; "We Have the Right of First Refusal; "NAOC Give us our Rights or you leave our land. The director-general of the Concerned Landlords of Swamp and Land Areas, Onisoya James Odu, threatened that the body would shut Agip's operations in the area if their demands were not met. Odu maintained that they would exhaust all peaceful means to ensure justice for the people, adding that if Agip failed to adhere that the body would confront the firm. He said, "We have come here to let the world know what we are going through. We have tried all we can as peaceful landlords of Agip to resolve all issues. The message we sent across they treated it with levity. "We have told them in our earlier briefing that we will exhaust the three Cs, Consolidation, Consultation before Confrontation. If all our demands are not met, we will have no other option than to confront them and shut all their operations on our land, he said.

He alleged that Agip has failed to enter into and implement the General Memorandum of Understanding (GMoU) with the landlords, adding that injustice against the people must stop. He said, "Are our people not employable? Are we not good enough to occupy some positions? How can you come to our land, take our natural resources away without giving attention to the people? We have been too patient, how long will we continue like this? They have been taking us for a ride, we say, enough is enough. "Since 1956 that they started operations and exploration in our communities nothing has happened to us, and we kept quiet. They have always tried to use the security agencies to intimidate us so that we keep calm, but enough is enough. We are supposed to be the best to secure their facilities and not the security agencies. Its not a war zone that it should be militarised.

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