Former militants under the auspices of 21st Century Youth of Niger Delta and Agitators with Conscience, on Friday, rejected the latest decision of President Muhammadu Buhari to kick out the governing board of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, and keep the Interim Management Team, IMT.
The campaigners led by self-professed “General” Izon Ebi, in a statement, asserted, that the federal government was regrettably sending agitators back to the trenches with its unacceptable and retrogressive resolutions.
The statement read, “We receive Mr President’s statement and stance concerning the imbroglio in the NDDC with shock and disbelief. For us, Mr President’s good gesture of proclaiming a forensic audit and constituting of a new board is like giving the Niger Delta people hope with the right hand and allowing himself to be hoodwinked in the night to take his good gesture and hope with his left hand.”
“How does Mr President explain to Niger Deltans the meaning of recomposing a board that had already been screened and confirmed by the Senate? We do not want to believe that Mr President is not in charge and the power play in the presidency is now directly affecting us negatively.
“What are the real functions of the interim team? What are their terms and time frame? What will become of the Niger Delta people without a budget? We view all this confusion as the handwork of evil merchants in the Niger Delta, who always profit from anarchy and illegality and always have their way.
“But this time, we are not going to allow it as we are very determined to stop them. We are not against the forensic audit and the probe of NDDC, as we are fully in support of the probing and the forensic audit. All we want is the right thing to be done, the peace and development of the Niger Delta, with respect for the law and our constitution, and adherence to the Act setting up the NDDC.
“It is so unfortunate that the Federal Government is taking the Niger Delta back to the trenches. The era of oppression, injustice and illegality is over for good in the Niger Delta because we are wiser and determined to resist this evil with all necessary means because anything short of the screened and confirmed board will not be acceptable.”
“Why is it that the peace and development of the Niger Delta are always politicized to further impoverish the people of the Niger Delta region? The federal government should explain the meaning of the recomposing a new board when credible distinguished personalities have been screened and confirmed by the Senate.”
“Anarchy is looming and the resource base of the nation is about to bleed because the oil-producing communities will not allow their oil to be used in funding illegality. At this point, we want to unequivocally sound it very loud to the federal government that anything short of the screened and confirmed board will not be accepted by the 21st Century Youths of the Niger Delta and Agitators with Conscience, like-minded agitators, ex-militants, and oil-producing communities of the Niger Delta.”
“At this juncture, the onus is on the federal government to do the needful by respecting the will of the people of the Niger Delta, the Senate and the rule of law. We are not going to allow these evil merchants to mortgage our future and that of the future unborn. What recomposing a screened and confirmed NDDC board all about? It seems the federal government did not learn any lesson from the imbroglio of the Nigerian Maritime University, NMU, Okerenkoko, Delta State,” the group said.