By Yien Gattuor Mead
Hundreds of protesters reportedly stormed the field office of SPOC oil Consortium Company at Tharjiak oilfields in Koch County of Unity State.
The demonstrators protested over failure of SPOC to deliver required services to communities in the oil producing State, despite their promise last year.
One of the community members in Koch County of Unity State, Mr. Pualino Makar told No.1 Citizen Daily Newspaper on phone that, they had stormed the compound of SPOC, Thakjiak oilfield which is one of the oil consortium company in Unity State.
“We came out to protest demanding our rights from the SPOC Company, because last year they agreed to deliver services to community in Unity State general,” Makar said.
Mr. Makar said the company and the communities in the oil rick Unity State agreed with the oil company, whereby SPOC was supposed to construct new schools, hospitals, and roads across the seven counties of Unity State as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), of giving back to the community.
However, Makar said SPOC has failed to lived up to their promise of giving back to communities, the promise which angered the locals hence triggered the protest.
He said that the protesters stormed and blocked all the SPOC field offices in Tharjiak.
The community member said that, the company has requested the protesters to give them (company) two days to talk to their team in Juba, after which they will respond to their demand and grievances.
They said, if the two days elapsed and the SPOC did not give them what they wanted, they will go back to the compound.
The Kosh community member who spoke to our correspondent in Bentiu via phone said, they are striking mostly because of industrial waste that is polluting their neighborhood.
“The reason for our protest is that industrial waste is very close to our community in the road and that’s why we were protesting,” he said.
Makar said the community also wants SPOC Company to connect the road linking Mirmir to Tharjiak.
Mr. Puolino Makar said the community are saying that, oil exploration activities is killing their cows and goats, as waters their animals drink is full of oils pollution.
He stated that the oil pollution is the one contributing to the death of their people in Unity State, yet they are getting nothing from the SPOC Company extracting the crude oil.
“The SPOC Company is treating us like animals not like humans being and we don’t know the reason why? Makar cautioned the conduct of oil consortium.
However, the Vice President of SPOC Company when contact by No. 1 Citizen Daily Newspaper correspondent in Bentiu via phone declined to comment on the matter.
He told our reporter that his editor should go to SPOC head office in Juba if he needs the company’s statement.
He further said that statement will only be guaranteed after they (SPOC) are authorized by the South Sudan Ministry of petroleum to enable them talk to the media.