The decision by the Federal Government to site nuclear power plants in Itu and Geregu in Akwa Ibom and Kogi states respectively has been met by stiff resistance by scientists from those areas. The scientists are currently calling on the Federal Government to rescind the project and save the country from holocaust associated with nuclear disaster.
“Nigeria does not have the capacity to manage a nuclear reactor crisis should anything go wrong. No country can guarantee that, not even the Russia; evidence have shown,” says Prof. Philip Njemanze, a Principal Investigator, NASA Johnson Space Center Neurolab, US.
Njemanze who is the Medical Director, Chidicon Medical Centre, Owerri, Imo State, is reacting to the moves made by Nigerian government, which signed an agreement with Russian-State-owned Rosatom on October 8, 2017, to build nuclear power plants in the country to help its electricity crisis.
These moves, which were allegedly made without Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and the consent of the host communities, Itu, Akwa Ibom State and Geregu, Kogi State, where the proposed nuclear power plants will be built, had met with stiff opposition by both the communities and experts across the country due to its known catastrophic disposition.
The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed for the project shows that it will be financed by Rosatom, under build, own, operate and transfer (BOT) basis and then transfer the cost to Nigeria to pay back.
It is estimated at about $20 billion, each of the four reactors, while four of them amount to $80 billion which Nigeria will pay back, implying that the country will continue to service the debt (loan) for the next generation, if Nigeria goes on with the project.
Nigerians however have been skeptical of the project given how dangerous nuclear energy is and the country’s poor maintenance culture.
According to World Health Organisation (WHO), ecosystem impact of the Soviet built Chernobyl nuclear plant explosion in 1986 affected 200,000 square kilometers of Europe.
The group continued: “The extent of the deposition varied depending on whether it was raining when contaminated air masses passed. Most of the radioactive isotopes deposited within 100 kilometers of the plant but were carried to thousands of kilometers away by wind, rainfall and rivers.
“Talking from the experience of the Chernobyl nuclear explosion, the Itu Nuclear Power Plant explosion is projected to affect the entire ecosystem of West and Central Africa, with spill over to North and East Africa along to Nile flow regions into the Nile Delta and to the Mediterranean across Europe.
“The entire oil-fields of Nigeria, the main source of national revenue would not be accessible by humans under normal conditions. The Nuclear Holocaust would be a hundred times more than Hiroshima & Nagasaki and several times the effects of Chernobyl nuclear explosion.
“The entire ethnic groups and tribes of South-South, South East and South West Nigeria would be wiped out as a people. We have for long argued that the proposed Nuclear Plant project is the most expensive in the world ever.