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EACOP delivers more fury than benefit

by Zahid Jadwat

EACOP is receiving backlash from activists worldwide. [Picture: Afrik21]


The East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) project is once again being lambasted by environmental activists. People demonstrated in 12 cities worldwide, in a bid to pressure Chinese actors out of backing the project that is set to displace thousands of Ugandans.

Speaking in an interview on Salaamedia on Thursday, Zaki Mamdoo, coordinator of the Stop EACOP campaign, said the project would be more detrimental than beneficial to those it will affect.

The roughly 1 700 km pipeline that will run between Uganda and Tanzania once completed threatens approximately 400 villages, tens of thousands of people and is bound to have severe effects on the environment.

Mamdoo said such a project would “push the globe ever-deeper into the situation of climate collapse that we are already in”.

“Alongside that, it is the socioeconomic impacts that communities are already reeling from for a project which really does nothing to meaningfully benefit and uplift the material conditions of communities on the ground,” he added.


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‘Extractive neo-colonial agenda’

The way Mamdoo and those protesting the project see it, the project TotalEnergies and Chinese National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) project is just a “continuation” of an “extractive neo-colonial agenda”.

It was about “taking an unrefined resource from the African continent and using it to make very few people rich while the entirety of the social, economic and environmental costs fall squarely on the shoulders of ordinary people,” he said.

Meanwhile, The Citizen reports TotalEnergies’ Francois Sinecan as touting the potential benefits of the project for local communities.

“With nearly $2 billion in investments, the [Murchison] and EACOP projects will create nearly 80,000 direct and indirect jobs. These resources will considerably impact the development of the Ugandan and Tanzanian economies,” he said.

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