Ijaw Youths Council, IYC worldwide, has reaffirmed that shutting down the Niger Delta region in protest against the managerial system of allowing the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, to be run on an interim administration basis, is not an option to be adopted by youths of the oil-rich region.
Briefing the press over the weekend in Abuja, Barr. Ogbofini Dennis, National Deputy Director of Mobilization of the IYC, was responding to plans by members of the IYC to shut down the region upon the expiration of a one-month ultimatum to the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio, and President Muhammadu Buhari to inaugurate a substantive board for the NDDC.
Ogbofini called on other IYC members to embrace peace and adopt dialogue in resolving the issues, considering other security challenges facing the country, as well as youth restiveness in the region.
He noted that any attempt to shut down the region will affect the aged people, adding that it will also confirm the Minister of State for Petroleum, Timipre Sylva’s warning that violence in the region will scare away oil companies from coming to invest unless peace is guaranteed.
“We should also consider that giving such ultimatum amounts to arm-twisting the President who in his wisdom, based on consultations and advice by the Niger Delta governors, ordered a forensic audit of the commission.
“As a serving executive member of the IYC and a key stakeholder of the Niger Delta, I also want the board to be inaugurated. But I have since observed that having a board has never been the problem of the NDDC.
“We should also consider the hunger strike that our mothers and fathers may face if eventually we shut down the region, we should think of the resulting effect of the planned protest,” he added.
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