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The Devastating Consequences of Oil Exploitation in Ibeno, Akwa Ibom



Ibeno, a once prosperous oil-producing community in Akwa Ibom State, has fallen victim to the detrimental effects of oil exploration and exploitation.

Multinational oil companies operating in the area have caused severe environmental, economic, and health hazards through oil spills and gas flaring.

These activities have contaminated water sources, harmed aquatic life, and endangered the well-being of the local population.

The indigenes of Ibeno are facing a dire situation with regards to water. The community’s water sources have been contaminated by oil spills, rendering the water undrinkable and unsafe.

The scarcity of potable water has forced residents to purchase expensive sachet water, priced at N100, which many cannot afford. Desperate for hydration, some resort to drinking the polluted water from streams, further endangering their health.

Gas flaring, a common practice in the area, has had severe health consequences for the people of Ibeno.

Rhoda, a youth activist, recounted her personal experience of suffering a miscarriage due to inhaling polluted air while working in Ibeno. Many other women in the community have experienced similar hardships, including respiratory diseases.

Gas flaring has become a grave threat to the overall well-being of the residents.

The adverse impact of oil spills extends beyond the environment and health. Kofi, a Cameroonian fisherman residing in Ibeno, expressed the difficulties faced by fishermen in the area. Oil spills damage fishing nets and deter fish from inhabiting the affected areas, leading to a loss of livelihood for fishermen.

The spills have disrupted the delicate balance of the marine ecosystem, exacerbating the challenges faced by the community.

The residents of Ibeno have faced a series of oil spills, with little to no compensation or remediation efforts from Exxon Mobil, the major oil company operating in the area.

Despite the company’s claims of taking appropriate action, the affected communities have received inadequate support. The lack of compensation has resulted in financial losses for fishermen, farmers, and other businesses, plunging many into poverty and frustration.

Local communities, together with civil society organizations, are demanding environmental remediation and fair compensation before oil companies divest from the region.

They argue that the companies should be held accountable for the extensive damage caused over the past six decades of oil exploration and gas flaring. Furthermore, the continuous practice of gas flaring throughout the Niger Delta has contributed to acidification of rivers and soils, leading to a food crisis in the region.

In an attempt to curb gas flaring, the Nigerian government launched the Nigeria Gas Flare Commercialization Programme (NGFCP) in 2020.

However, the program has fallen short of its goals, as gas flaring persists and its hazardous effects continue to plague the local population.

The people of Ibeno, Akwa Ibom State, have endured immense suffering due to the devastating consequences of oil exploration and exploitation.

Oil spills and gas flaring have contaminated water sources, harmed aquatic life, and posed severe health risks to the community.

The negligence of oil companies, exemplified by the lack of compensation and environmental remediation, has compounded the challenges faced by the residents.

Urgent intervention is necessary to address these issues, ensuring the restoration of the environment and the well-being of the people of Ibeno.


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Alhaji Mujahid Abubakar Dokubo-Asari on July 4th, 2024, welcomed a visiting research team from the esteemed University of Groningen, located in the Netherlands, to his residence in Obuama, Rivers State.

The University of Groningen, with a rich history spanning over four centuries, prides itself on excellence and has been associated with notable figures like Nobel Prize laureates Ben Feringa and Frits Zernike.

The university is renowned for its groundbreaking research that addresses contemporary social issues, bridging the gap between various fields of study and connecting science with society. Their current research areas include Energy, Healthy Ageing, and Sustainable Society, with recent studies focusing on topics such as environmental sustainability, conscious living, and the impact of climate change on wildlife.

Led by Dr. Dumebi Obute, the visiting team from the University of Groningen is conducting a comparative study on resource extraction, its environmental implications, and the adaptive strategies of indigenous communities affected by extensive resource exploitation. Their journey has taken them to various parts of Africa, including South Africa, Zambia, and Nigeria, to investigate large-scale extraction industries like mining and crude oil production.

Recognizing Alhaji Mujahid Dokubo Asari’s prominent role in advocating for resource control and environmental preservation in the Niger Delta region, the research team sought his expertise and insights. Alhaji Mujahid Dokubo Asari, known for his global advocacy on these interconnected issues, was seen as a valuable source of historical knowledge and practical experiences in handling resource-related challenges.

The collaboration between Alhaji Mujahid Abubakar Dokubo-Asari and the University of Groningen holds the potential to inform global resource policies, promoting the well-being of indigenous communities impacted by resource extraction activities. By integrating historical context and local perspectives, this research aims to contribute to more sustainable and equitable resource management practices worldwide.

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Flood Submerges Three Communities in Uyo




Three communities in Uyo, the capital of Akwa Ibom State, have been submerged following days of heavy rain. The affected areas include Nung Obio Enang along Stadium Road, Urua Ekpa axis, and Afaha Oku in Uyo metropolis.

Reports indicate that the flood has displaced residents of Nung Obio Enang, with many buildings in the community submerged and residents seeking shelter in nearby facilities. Our correspondent observed that more than 32 houses were affected, with residents seen salvaging their belongings.

Etop Effiong, one of the affected residents, stated that flooding has been a perennial issue in the area for several years, exacerbated by the construction of Stadium Road during the administration of former governor Godswill Akpabio. Effiong explained that the road was built without adequate drainage, causing severe flooding during heavy rains.

“During heavy rains and throughout the rainy season, we have to leave our houses and stay with neighbors for one or two weeks until the flood water subsides. This has been our predicament for many years. This house can collapse anytime,” Effiong lamented.


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Second Woman Assumes Presidency of Rotary International




One-year term will prioritize adapting to changing times and advancing peace


EVANSTON, Ill., 25 June, 2024 — Stephanie Urchick, member of the Rotary Club of McMurray, PA, will become the second woman to take office as president of Rotary International on 1 July 2024.

During her one-year term, Urchick will lead the 119-year-old membership service organization in adapting for future success as Rotary’s 1.4 million members around the world develop and implement sustainable, community-driven projects that fight disease, promote peace, provide clean water, support education, save mothers and children, grow local economies, and protect the environment. More than US$5.5 billion has been awarded through The Rotary Foundation—Rotary’s charitable arm that helps clubs work together to perform meaningful, impactful service—to support these initiatives over the last 100 years.

In order to ensure that Rotary membership is a compelling option for those who have a heart for service and fellowship, Urchick is urging clubs to assess their strengths and areas for improvement while also encouraging them to embrace different meeting formats and membership styles as they work to mirror the communities in which they exist in terms of gender, age, culture, socioeconomic status, and more.

“Embracing different viewpoints and creating peaceful, welcoming, and inclusive societies is at the heart of Rotary’s work,” said Urchick. “As president, I will work with clubs to prioritize advancing peace by helping to create the conditions for stable and resilient societies in which people can thrive.”

As one of the world’s largest membership service organizations, Rotary has made peacebuilding the cornerstone of its global mission.   From carrying out service projects to supporting future leaders through youth programs and scholarships, Rotary is taking action to address the underlying causes of conflict, including poverty, discrimination, ethnic tension, lack of access to education, and unequal distribution of resources.

Through academic training, practice and global networking, Rotary is helping professionals become effective catalysts for peace. Rotary partners with leading universities around the world to host Rotary Peace Centers that empower, educate, and increase the capacity of peacebuilders. Each year, Rotary awards 50 fully funded fellowships for master’s degrees and up to 80 fully funded fellowships for certificate studies to dedicated peace and development leaders from communities around the world.

Since 2002, the peace centers program has prepared more than 1,800 peace fellows working in more than 140 countries to create a more peaceful world.

To build on this momentum, Urchick will host a peace conference at the launch of Rotary’s newest Peace Center in partnership with Bahçeşehir University, in Istanbul, Turkey in February 2025.

As president, Urchick will also oversee Rotary’s top goal of eradicating polio. Alongside its Global Polio Eradication Initiative partners, Rotary has achieved a 99.9% reduction in polio cases, and contributed more than US$2.7 billion and countless volunteer hours to protect 3 billion children from this paralyzing disease.

About Stephanie Urchick 

Urchick holds a doctorate in leadership studies from Indiana University of Pennsylvania. A Rotary member since 1991, Stephanie has served Rotary in many roles and capacities. Her service includes building a primary school in Vietnam; installing water filters in the Dominican Republic; mentoring new Rotary members in Ukraine; coordinating a Rotary Foundation grant project in Poland; and leading efforts to formulate and adopt Rotary’s Action Plan, a strategic road map that will help bring even more people together to create lasting and positive change in an evolving world.

About Rotary

Rotary unites a global network of volunteer leaders dedicated to tackling the world’s most pressing humanitarian challenges and creating lasting change. Rotary connects 1.4 million people of action from more than 46,000 Rotary clubs in almost every country in the world. Their service improves lives both locally and internationally, from helping those in need in their own communities to working toward a polio-free world. For more information, visit

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