The director general, National Oil Spill Detective and Response Agency (NOSDRA), Mr. Idris Musa has said that $1 billion has been set aside for the clean-up of Ogoni land.
Musa who disclosed this at a press conference in Abuja at the weekend said $200 million will be spent every year for the five-year cleaning plan.
The director general said the total restoration of the cleanup areas will cost that much adding after the completion of the cleanup it will take 25-30 years for the trees to grow and replace the withered ones.
“It is the restoration to its pristine state that will take up to that long not the cleaning of the land itself,” said Musa.
He added that the United Nations Environment Programme, (UNEP) has fact sheets and accurate information on the Ogoni cleanup.
“The fact sheet has detailed information on how the pollution happened, the medium used and again the depth and area of the pollution and how far it has gone.
“The fact sheets are accurate and are classified into three areas; there are some areas that the pollution was not much, they fall under category B. Very critical areas are under category A; there are areas that are category X, these are neither here nor there but require more work to be done to be placed under any category.
“We start with areas that are less polluted for cleaning, areas heavily polluted are within the water bodies where it was easier for people to do refining and to also tap on pipe line to ferry crude oil away. These are under category A the impact has gone down and hit the ground water.
“There were 68 fact sheets. We were able to bring out 64 out of the 68 fact sheets. We also looked at 6 of the sheets and there was actually nothing much in the 6 sheets.
“I want to use this medium to let Nigerians know that the Ogoni cleanup is not a political gimmick. It is presently still ongoing and we are working round clock to ensure a thorough work is done,” he said.