From Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa
The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva has arrived in Nembe, Bayelsa State to inspect the OML 29 oil spill at the Santa Barbara oil field.
The spill from an oil field operated by Aiteo Eastern Exploration and Production Company (AEEPCO) has been ongoing for over three weeks.
President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday instructed Sylva to proceed to Nembe to assess the situation.
The minister, who landed in Nembe in a helicopter at about 12:40 pm in the company of federal representative for Nembe/Brass Federal Constituency, Hon Israel Sunny-Goli, and the CEO Upstream Regulatory Commission, said that the president consoles with the people affected by the disaster.
‘It is a very sad development but these things happen. They are operational hazards of the business. Mr President is very concerned personally himself and that is why he asks us his team to come and inspect and make sure that the appropriate action is taken to ameliorate the situation.
‘It is not just me that feels their pain, Mr President feels their pain and that is why he personally instructed me and the CEO of the Upstream Regulatory Authority to come and actually assess the situation and take appropriate actions to ensure the people are taken care of,’ Sylva stated.