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Oil Spill: Bayelsa Govt sues Agip for N1.6 trn





The Bayelsa State Government has filed a law suit against the Nigerian Agip Oil Company, NAOC, over an oil spill from the company’s facility located in Brass Local Government Area of the state.

In the originating summon filed by the Bayelsa State Attorney-General and Commissioner of Justice, Kemeasuode Wodu, the state government is demanding the sum of N1.6 trillion for general and exemplary damages from the spill which occurred on November 27, 2013.

According to the charges, the oil spill contravened the provisions of Regulation 13 of the Petroleum Regulation made pursuant to the Petroleum Act Cap P10 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria.

The Bayelsa government is seeking an injunction restraining the defendant, “from further discharging onto or allowing crude oil to  the waters of and around the said SBM Sirius, Offshore Brass oil export facility.”

Another relief sought by the State government include an order directing NAOC “to provide potable drinking water for the communities in Bayelsa  impacted by the said crude spillage from the said SBM Sirius operated by the defendant.”

The Bayelsa government also wants the  defendant “to take all appropriate steps towards restoring the land, swamps, rivers and waters impacted by the spillage and pay compensation to all persons whose properties were destroyed.”

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It asked the court to declare that the action or conduct of the defendant in allowing or causing petroleum to escape from its  facility was as a result of operational error into the waters of and around the said SMB facility which flowed into the sea and parts of Bayelsa.

The Bayelsa  government also wants the court to declare that “the defendant is under a legal obligation to restore the lands, rivers, creeks and the entire environment impacted by the spill from  on November 27, 2013 to their original state before they were impacted.”

The plaintiff also asked the court to declare that the defendant was under “a legal obligation to pay compensation to all persons whose properties were polluted in Bayelsa State by the said crude oil that escaped from the SBM Sirius facility.”

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