South-South Govs Urged To Support FG With Political, Economic Plans For Niger Delta
Youth leaders from ethnic nationalities from the nine states of the Niger Delta yesterday chided the State Governors from the region to support the Federal Government efforts to resolve the contentious issues of the region with the establishment of an economic and political plan for the development of the region.
According to the concerned youths, though the Federal Government is slow at setting up the needed negotiation team to discuss with the leaders of the region, the State Governor’s should do more at assisting the Federal Government by setting up an economic plan to resolve rising poverty and criminality in the region.
The youth leaders,who made this position known after a meeting in Yenagoa under the aegis of the Niger Delta Ethnic Nationalities Youth Leaders Council and attended by the Ijaw Youth Council Worldwide; Urhobo Progressive Union Youth Wing Worldwide; Itsekiri National Youth Council Worldwide; Ndokwa Youth Council Worldwide; Edo Youth Council Worldwide; Ikwerre Youth Council Worldwide; and Ibibio Youth Council Worldwide, among others.
The President, IYC, Mr. Udengs Eradiri, who briefed journalists on the outcome of the meeting, called on the “That the governors in the Niger Delta should do more in resolving the militancy and other criminal issues in the region. They (governors) should set up an economic plan to take the region out of the crises.”
“We are saying this because liberation itself cannot come from external but must be internally driven. What are the Niger Delta governors doing genuinely on their own part to resolve these crises?We have yet to see that kind of action on the part of the governors. Everybody is just waiting for the Federal Government. State governors in this region must meet, engage stakeholders and begin to resolve the problems.”
“The country is facing an economic crisis; what are our state governors doing to come out with an economic plan to take this region out of poverty and militancy? As I speak to you, the conditions in the Niger Delta are getting out of hand; there is widespread poverty and criminality is going up everyday.”
“So we call on our governors to provide leadership, economic leadership, political leadership and developmental leadership.”
The Youth leaders also called on the President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government to quickly set up its own negotiation team to discuss with their leaders on the crises rocking the region.
According to the youth leaders were unanimous that if the Federal Government desired peace, security and development of the region, it should do the needful by constituting its own negotiation team urgently.
The youth leaders recalled that since the November 1, 2016 meeting between Niger Delta leaders and the Federal Government, the Federal Government had yet to set up its own dialogue team to interface with their leaders on the problems in the region.
They said, “We urge the Federal Government to quickly set up its negotiation team to urgently resolve the crises in the Niger Delta. You will agree with me that the whole world has been waiting for the government to do the needful.”
“As it stands, the knife and the yam are in the hands of the Federal Government when it concerns this Niger Delta crisis.”
The leaders also urged the Federal Government to stop the invasion of the Niger Delta communities, insisting that there were better ways to resolve criminal issues in the region.
They urged the government to deploy its intelligence apparatus in the resolution of the crises in the region, saying that it had been discovered that intelligence had recorded more successes than the option of military invasion.
The leaders stated, “The recent invasion in Delta State had more of children, women and the elderly as the major casualties. So, we call on the Federal Government to do more on intelligence to resolve the issues.”
“But above all, the political will on the part of the government will better resolve the issues than military option.”
They also urged the government to quickly resolve the legal issues relating to the Maritime University in Delta State, insisting that such a move would discourage vandalism and destruction of critical national assets in the region.
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