By Iberedem Ibanga, Eket
A serious crisis may cripple the operations of oil exploration giants Exxon Mobil in Akwa Ibom state following attempts by the company to start making surreptitious claims to the nearly completed Eket – Ibeno dual carriage way constructed by the Government of Akwa Ibom State.
Youths in the core oil communities of Eket,Ibeno, Esit Eket, Onna, are said to be irked by some media campaigns orchestrated by Mobil, claiming ownership of the road project through giant bill boards and electronic media announcements.
Claims by Exxon Mobil that it constructed the road, following a counterpart funding of N8bn has been greatly disproved by the youths who are threatening to get a refund of the money as part of the palliative which Mobil had promised the communities to curb the effect of a previous oil spill incident.
The community youths have also alleged that the total palliative fund which totaled N26.5bn was promised by Exxon Mobil as part of its remedial measures for the November 2012 Oil Spill.
To start with the youths have vowed to bring down the misleading and provocative billboard and mount pressure for a refund of their N8bn since Mobil is now laying claim to it as its own contribution.
The N8bn, in their opinion is not even a fifth of the over N46bn being expended by the government to construct the road which runs into 19.5km and has over 4 new bridges and swamps to be contained.