House Rejects Proposed Nuclear Power Plant For A’Ibom

Akwa Ibom House of Assembly
Akwa Ibom House of Assembly

The proposed establishment of the Nuclear Power Plant in Akwa Ibom State has drawn the bile of members of the State House of Assembly.

The project proposed by the National Atomic Energy Commission (NAEC) for Oku Iboku community in Itu local government area of the state had been opposed by Etetim Onuk, the Itu chairman, Prof. Okon Ansa of Concerned Patriot and Pastor Patrick Henry Edet of Grace Family.

In a resolution passed on Tuesday, February 11, the House vehemently rejected the plan and called on the state government not to release any parcel of land in the state for it.

This followed on a motion by KufreAbasi Edidem, the member representing Itu State Constituency, who argued that the project was not in tandem with international standards guiding the implementation of civil nuclear programmes across the globe.

“Despite warnings from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) that Nigeria lacks the technical competence to handle nuclear issues, the National Atomic Energy Commission (NAEC) has not relented in its decision to proceed with the nuclear project in Itu LGA,” he observed.

He stated that the 6th House of Assembly also kicked against the project, yet the regulatory body was still adamant on its establishment in the state.

“The 6th Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly through a motion moved by Rt. Hon. Nse Essien, a member representing Onna State Constituency, rejected the planned nuclear power plant, urging the Federal Government to instead of the dangerous venture, explore other available and harmless sources of power in the state, including increasing the capacity of the Ibom Power Plant,” Edidem recalled.

He further cited constant emission of radioactive radiations, discharge of non-biodegradable radioactive wastes, absorption into ecosystem and food chain, as some dangers Akwa Ibom people would be exposed to if the nuclear power plant is cited in Itu LGA or any other part of the state.

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Responding, Aniekan Bassey, the Speaker, commended Edidem for the timeliness of the motion and urged the Clerk to communicate the House resolution to the appropriate quarters.

At the plenary too, the House passed the Bill to Eliminate Violence in Private and Public Life, Prohibit All Forms of Violence Against Persons and to Provide Maximum Protection and Effective Remedies for Victims and Punishment for Offenders and Other Matters Connected Therewith into law.

The House also passed into law, A Bill to Establish the Akwa Ibom State Bureau of Public Procurement and Budget Monitoring for the Conduct of Public Procurement in the State and for Other Matters Connected Therewith, while A Bill for a Law to Establish the Akwa Ibom State Parks and Gardens Agency and for Connected Purposes, sponsored by the member representing Nsit Ibom State Constituency, Ifiok Udoh, scaled through First Reading and was referred to the House Committee on Culture and Tourism.