Oil spill: A-Ibom youths picket ExxonMobil

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By Soni Daniel

Ibeno—Youths from ExxonMobil’s host communities in Ibeno, Akwa Ibom State, have shut down the operations of the multinational oil firm over persistent oil spills and unfulfilled promises made to the communities.

The youths, who blocked the main gates to ExxonMobil’s Quo Iboe Terminal, QIT, have vowed not to leave the area until the company carries out proper remediation on the environment and also fulfilled some of the promises made during previous oil spills.

The company, however, said yesterday that it had contained the source of the spill and had notified relevant stakeholders of the incident, which spilled approximately 12 barrels of oil.

Mr. Akaninyene Esiere, the company’s spokesman said: “We have activated our emergency response system and contained the release. All relevant regulatory authorities and community leaders have been notified.”

Mr David Okon, the Secretary, Youth Presidents Forum and President of Iwuokpom Community Youth, where ExxonMobil has its jetty, said the recent spill occurred on Thursday when thunder struck the QIT tank farm and one of the crude oil-laden tanks went up in flames.

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