Traditional rulers in Ogoni land have endorsed an indigenous oil firm – RoboMicheal Limited – to commence operations in the Ogoni Oilfield.
Their decision to endorse the oil firm was contrary to their earlier stand not to allow the company and other oil firms to operate in their domain, pending the resolution of all pending issues in Ogoni.
The Supreme Council of Ogoni Traditional Rulers and the Conference of Ogoni Traditional Rulers jointly gave the endorsement as resolutions at the end of a meeting of the 27-member council at the Palace of its Chairman, King Godwin Giniwa in Korokoro, Tai Local Council of Rivers State.
The council, which represents the 27 monarchs in Ogoni, said the endorsement of RoboMicheal Limited was imperative, as the company has been engaging with the people and had obtained the operations license for OML 11 from the Federal Government.
But the Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP) said the endorsement by the royal fathers did not represent the wishes of Ogoni people and therefore, rejected and dissociated itself from the move.
In a statement by MOSOP’s publicity secretary, Fegalo Nsuke, the group maintained its earlier position that it had not and will not endorse any oil company whether Robo Michael, Belema Oil Producing Limited, NPDC, NNPC, Shell or any other oil firm to resume oil production in Ogoniland until the issues raised by the Ogoni people are addressed through dialogue.
Meanwhile, spokesperson of the Supreme Council of Ogoni Traditional Rulers and Paramount Ruler of Kpite Community, King Samuel Nnee, who read the communiqué to newsmen at the end of the meeting, said RoboMicheal was committed to the development of Ogoniland.