The United Niger Delta Energy Development Security Strategy, UNDEDSS, rose from an Emergency meeting with the Creeks of the Niger Delta on Wednesday to caution the Federal Government that the region will resist the obnoxious Water Resources Amendments with every iota of its might. Although the federal government has said there was no going back, UNDEDSS threatened that the region would confront the government “in their deadly efficiency”. The premier advocacy group in the region, cautioned the President Buhari-led government to rescind it’s position or be ready to face massive protest/resistance. “This FGN must come to realise that no part of Nigeria is a conquered province, and that the erstwhile insults heaped on the Niger Delta must end forthwith. For too long our region has been the whipping boy of Nigeria”, the Niger Delta coalition of action civil society declared in a statement issued by UNDEDSS Secretary General, Comrade. Tony I Uranta.
Part of UNDEDSS statement reads, “Whenever any national leader wants to appear to be serious about the war against corruption, the focus is the Niger Delta, its governors et al. Then you will hear questions like, ‘What have you used the 13 percent derivative for?’ Nobody asks what has been derived from the 87 percent that goes to the rest of the country, even though over 95% of revenues come from our bastardized and despoliated waters and land.” For example, recently the NDDC has come under unnecessarily excessive fire, not because its corruption is worse, but because everybody seeks to sweep under the carpet the comparatively obscenely humongous amounts being looted via the NNPC, the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, the North East Development Commission, the CBN,the FIRS, to name a few MDAs being looted by parties close to the President and the National Assembly Leadership.
“We have said ad nauseam that we know that Niger Delta leaders are as corrupt as virtually all other leaders are, but that we expect that what is good for the goose that lays the golden eggs for all, must be good for the parasitic ganders that contribute next to nothing to the national GDP! Yet nobody listens to the region, not even our erstwhile friend the new Chief of Staff.
“And, now, to rub insult into our injuries, the FGN thinks we shall let it take over our ancestral waters and lands. We shall call on every ally within and outside the country to resist these diabolical amendments! Many forget how far-reaching our tentacles really are, inside and outside Nigeria and, may we never need to remind them”
The statement noted further that “Appointments are made onto bodies that exist ostensibly for the region’s good without inputs from our key political, traditional or socio-cultural leaders, and even the NDDC still has Board members who are not even remotely connected to the region. Yet, no Niger Deltan is on, say, the North East Development Commission NEDC Board, nor are strategically and adequately represented on the oil and gas bodies that owe more than 95 percent existence to the region! Enough is enough.”
UNDEDSS concluded by demanding that the FGN immediately implements the 16-point 2016 Agreement between it and the region as reached in several meetings between the President and both UNDEDSS and PANDEF, led by Comrade Uranta and Chief Edwin Kiagbodo Clark respectively. The group warned that ” should the FGN not show a willingness, before the end of 14days from the date of this statement, to dynamically embrace the region, via its leaders, it shall withdraw from the unilateral ceasefire in the region, which it helped broker, and leave the FGN to get itself out of the morass that will ensue”.