Burna Boy Credit: GIN photo

Grammy-award winner Damini Ogulu, popularly known as Burna Boy, has picked a smoking topic for his latest record dubbed “Whiskey.”

“Port Harcourt residents dem no dey breathe fresh air, my people! When you wake up in the morning, you cough black soot,” the song opens. 

Burna Boy’s Afro-pop record strikes out at air pollution, which has long bedeviled the residents of his hometown in Port Harcourt and other parts of Rivers state.

“Because of oil and gas/ My city so dark/ Pollution make the air turn black/ Every man has to stay on guard.” 

The soot pollution crisis has lingered in the ‘Garden City’ for over seven years, as illegal crude oil refinement continues to make the skies choke with soot. Despite several law enforcement efforts by the Rivers State government to tackle the crisis, the illegal refinement continues to thrive in plain sight.

In a series of posts on his Instagram stories, the “Ye” crooner shared photos of dark clouds caused by soot pollution in the state.

He also called on relevant authorities to address the situation using the hashtag #StopthesootinPortHarcourt.

This comes a few days after Gov. Nyesom Wike ordered the shutdown of illegal refineries and called for the arrest of those involved in the illegal bunkering.

In spite of government promise, a petition has been started on the world’s leading platform for petitions, change.org, aimed at getting the government to investigate and put an end to the deadly black soot.

According to a report, in Rivers state, 22,077 people received care for soot related conditions in five years, while many children were hospitalized for difficulties in breathing.

For further information on oil pollution in Nigeria, visit the news site Sahara Reporters.

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