A women leader in Eleme local government area, Dr Patience Osaro-Ejiji, expressed worries cancer plague in the area allegedly caused by pollution.
Osaro-Ejiji said, “In the project, women are not carried along because they believe it is a man’s world, but they forgot that we are suffering more. Our crops are not growing well again, yet we have children to feed.
“Today, there is cancer of the skin now in Eleme, we are experiencing heavy soot and rainwater in our communities is so dark that we cannot even wash with it. We expected a comprehensive health scheme
“We were expecting better health scheme for Ogoni people, but they came to give us Paracetamol, this is not the kind of health programme recommended in the UNEP report.
“We need comprehensive health scheme, where the process will be thorough. They should come and use a primary health centre or build the centre in at least each of the local government areas so that people who are sick can always seek intervention.”
“The only way forward is that they should include names of women leaders that will not compromise in bringing what belongs to the women to them.
“We have children that are over 30 years of age that we, as parents, are still feeding. If we fail to provide for them, they may go out and join cultism. Therefore, there is need to engage our youths so that they will stop involving in acts that will re-pollute the environment after cleaning,” she asserted.
Osaro-Ejiji confessed that SPDC was operating in Ogoni, it was very sensitive to the issue of gender balance.
She urged HYPREP to emulate Shell in the project, adding that the 1,200 slots provided for women in the four local government areas were discouraging.
She said, “Shell is fairer to women than HYPREP, HYPREP should emulate Shell, they are fair to women, it is in the policy.”