Dwindling oil revenue and destruction of ecosystem: Participants suggest way forward for Nigeria
Rickrex Event City, on Guobadia Street, Off Etete, GRA, Benin City, was agog on Saturday, June 5 as academicians, civil society groups, captains of industry and non-governmental organisations gathered in their numbers to participate in events commemorating the World Environment Day 2021 which included lectures, discussions and awards.
In his welcome address, chairman of the Board of Directors of Frontline Energy and Environmental Consultancy Services (FEECS), Professor Gideon Emelue, averred that open grazing has been doing a lot of damage to the environment and as such adviced Nigerians to tread with care.
In his presentation, Engr. Gilbert Nweke, Safety Manager, Benin Electricity Distribution Company(BEDC), enumerated the numerous problems that the organisation has been battling with which among others includes: Violation of Right of Way of Power Lines (building/trading under Lines); Illegal Connections and Reconnections; Vandalism of Power Infrastructure; Meter By-pass/Energy Theft; Illegal activities of Roadside Electricians on our Network; Hanging of Wires and Unprofessional electrical wiring of houses, no Earthing etc.
Discussants talked about the ills bedevilling the oil sector and advised that attention should be shifted to agriculture for a solution to the short fall in revenue from the oil sector.
Thereafter, awards were given to some individuals and organisations for their contribution to the advancement of the environment among several reasons.
The awardees included Professor Lawrence Ezemonye, the Vice Chancellor of the Igbinedion University, Okada; Dr. Edwin Uyi Ojo, the Executive Director, Environmental Rights Action and Friends of the Earth, Nigeria(ERA/FoEN); Mr. Charles Olumese, Edo State Chairman, National Association of Hydrogeologist; Engr. Saliu Ahmed, MD/CEO Benin Owena River Basin Development Authority(BORBDA); Presco Plc; Network Oil and Gas(NO and G); Professor Anthony Ogbeibu; BEDC; Professor Cyril Otoikhian of Novena University; Reverend David Ugolor, Executive Director, African Network for Environment and Economic Justice (ANEEJ) and Professor Babatunde Rabiu, Director/CEO, Centre for Atmospheric Research, National Space Research and Development Agency.
In his closing remarks, host of the event, Sunny Duke Okosun, the Manager Programmes ITV/Radio, gave kudos to the participants, guests and sponsors for their support. He opined that the issue of the neglect of the environment has been a recurring affair and that it is time that a lasting solution is found to address the situation.
The occasion was spiced with entertainment including sonorous music supplied by the in-house Disc Jockey, cultural troupe and soul music legend, Arthur Segun Alile.
Guests and participants were also treated to choice drinks and delicious meals.