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Keneth Green started this petition to Nyesome Wike (Rivers State Governor)

I am Tamunotonye Green Keneth. I was born and bred in Port Harcourt City in Rivers State. I'm a graduate of Biochemistry from the University of Port Harcourt in Rivers State. The years of environmental pollution in the state and the need to remedy the situation made me pursue a Master's in Environmental Management and Control at the Rivers State University and Technology.

Port Harcourt residents wake up every morning to breathe air polluted by soot emitted from illegal refineries in Rivers State. It looks like fog, but everywhere becomes covered with tiny black particles after condensing.

In November, my asthmatic dad had an attack. As a result, he had severe difficulty in breathing. We called a doctor friend, who recommended medication to help. Unfortunately, a few minutes after we administered the drug, he threw up, the color of which surprisingly looked like he ate charcoal.

A similar situation happened when my sister visited with her baby from Lagos. After the first night they spent in Port Harcourt, the 7-month old baby began to feel uncomfortable. He cried continuously, and we discovered he wasn't breathing as he ought to. 

We found out that the baby's nostrils had been clogged with Soot when the white cloth that my sister used to wipe his nose turned black. 

The SAME SOOT is slowly killing residents in the city. 

Port Harcourt is one of the oil-producing states in Nigeria's oil-rich Niger-Delta region. Artisanal and illegal refineries locally referred to as 'kpo-fire' have been linked and blamed for the soot emission.

Some banks, hotels, fast food outlets in Port Harcourt, to mention a few, buy petroleum products from these illegal refineries instead of the normal channels because they're cheaper.

As much as we condemn the act of refining petroleum products illegally, there is also the need to call out those patronizing them. They're encouraging the emission of soot particles.

Though state Governor Nyesome Wike ordered the shutdown of illegal refineries in January, it is not enough.

Port Harcourt residents are suffocating.

This is now a national issue.  This petition is calling on President Muhammadu Buhari overseeing the petroleum ministry AND the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva, to investigate this menace in Rivers State.

We want the governor to use his good offices through the state environment ministry to name a Task force to specifically round up illegal refineries operators and prosecute them to serve as a warning to others.

Sign this petition to call on the Minister of State for Environment, Sharon Ikeazor to create a joint task force with the Rivers state government to investigate increasing soot emission.

These actions will assist in producing supplementary evidence to this article, which will initiate a response from the appropriate authorities to reinstate our environment to its best habitable state. 

Port Harcourt was known as the 'Garden City,' but if this pollution continues, it will become a haven of diseases.

Before I started this petition, I made lots of inquiries. As a result, I garnered that many people raised concerns about black stains on their shirts, severe health challenges, and breathing complications owing to this Soot. 

People are relocating from Port Harcourt in droves because of the SOOT.

Soot is toxic, not just to the environment but also to the health of Port Harcourt residents. It can aggravate cardiovascular and respiratory-related ailments like asthma, cough, hypertension, and even death if left unchecked. 

12,610 have signed. Let’s get to 15,000!
At 15,000 signatures, this petition becomes one of the top signed on!