The Federal Government has in a statement warned the public to beware of fraudsters using the Ogoniland cleanup to extort money from people.
The statement was issued on Monday by the Director of Press, Federal Ministry of Environment, Alhaji Isiaka Yusuf.
The statement read:
“It has come to the knowledge of the Federal Ministry of Environment that some dubious individuals may use the opportunity of the project to extort money from the unsuspecting people of the Niger Delta communities.
“This includes the forgery of Federal Government Agencies letters.’’
“Without doubt, we wish to state that the Federal Government in collaboration with other stakeholders in the oil industry is funding the project.
“It has not and will not authorise or contract individuals, groups and or organizations to collect money from the good people of the Niger Delta on behalf of the government for the purpose of cleanup of Ogoniland and other oil impacted communities in the Niger Delta region.
“In view of the foregoing, the ministry hereby warns that anybody, groups or organisations found extorting money from the people for the purpose of the Ogoniland cleanup project will be made to face the full wrath of the law.’’
“The ministry, therefore, takes this opportunity to reiterate the Federal Government’s commitment in ensuring the transparent and successful cleanup of Ogoniland.’’
Yusuf advised the public to report anybody, group and or organisation collecting money from people for the cleanup exercise to the police or any other law enforcement agencies.