Tony John, Port Harcourt
The United States Government has initiated moves to promote issues of development in the Niger Delta region through sponsorship of another batch of Nigerians in its International Visitor Leadership Programme.
The programme, which was sponsored by the Public Affairs Section of the US Consulate in Nigeria, was organized by the US Department of State in Washington DC.
Daily Sun gathered that the US Consulate selected Niger Delta community leaders, including Port Harcourt-based human rights advocate and environmentalist, Fyneface Dumnamene, ‘to learn about alternative conflict resolution mechanisms’ in the 20-day programme.
The course, Daily Sun learnt, would help the participants study ‘how to forge a constructive relationship with Federal regulators and the oil sector’ using the model employed by American communities, who were in a similar position.
Also, the participants were expected ‘to explore concrete examples of community-based platforms that have addressed local issues in a constructive and sustainable approach’ in the course, which kicks off on Monday June 18, and rounds off on Friday, July 6.
The document signed by US Consul General in Nigeria, John Bray, emphasised that the participants would also learn ‘how to organize their own platforms, and implement negotiation strategies’.
It added that they would do this by learning how ‘to enlist help of state, federal, civil society, and oil companies to achieve the aim’.