Oil Spillage: Court Awards N82bn Damages Against NNPC

 

The Federal High Court in Abuja has awarded the sum of N82 billion as general damages against the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited over oil spillage, in Ibeno Community within Ibeno LGA, Akwa Ibom State.

Delivering judgment, Justice Taiwo Taiwo, ordered the oil corporations, to pay the sum in 14 days, or pay eight percent of the sum, per annum.

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Justice Taiwo had earlier struck out ExxonMobil from the list of defendants, on account of being an American registered company, leaving the NNPC and Mobil producing Nigeria Unlimited.

The court held that the oral and documentary evidence produced by Mobil, was not helpful in their case, describing them as serving pre-determined assets.

According to Justice Taiwo, the action of Mobil is a clear violation of section 11 of the oil pipeline act that makes it mandatory for the oil companies to monitor and fix defective pipelines.

Akwa Ibom: Exxon Mobil says begins oil spill clean-up

ExxonMobil’s said on Tuesday it was helping clean up an oil spill near its facility off the Nigeria’s southeast coast, although the company wasn’t yet sure what caused the leak.

Mobil Producing Nigeria, a joint venture between ExxonMobil and the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), confirmed last week oil had been sighted near Ibeno in Akwa Ibom state but the source was unknown.

Local fishing communities blame Mobil for the spill, which they say has cut off their livelihood.

“Mobil … confirms it is assisting with the clean-up in cooperation with local authorities,” company spokesman Nigel Cookey-Gam said.
“The source of the hydrocarbon remains unknown as fingerprinting of collected samples is ongoing … Mobil remains committed to ensuring that the health and environment of our neighbouring communities are protected.”

Oil spills are common in Africa’s top energy producer and stretches of the Niger Delta, a fragile wetlands environment, are coated in crude. Thousands of barrels are spilled every year and lax enforcement means there are few penalties.

Oil firms say the majority of spills are due to armed oil thieves hacking into or blowing up pipelines to steal crude, an activity they estimate saps nearly a fifth of Nigeria’s output.

Exxon Mobil detects oil spill in Akwa Ibom

Exxon Mobil Corp. said it has detected an oil spill along the shoreline of Nigeria’s oil-rich southern delta.

Exxon Mobil spokesman Nigel Cookey-Gam said in an email statement on Wednesday that the spill was spotted near Ibeno in Akwa Ibom where the U.S. oil company’s local subsidiary has the  base of its operations.