Following the renewed threat by the Niger Delta Avengers President Muhammadu Buhari has been advised to act fast and calm the nerves by releasing the N2 billion approved fund for the take take-off of academic activities at the Nigeria Maritime University, Okerenkoko.
The Paramount Ruler of Gbaramatu kingdom in Warri South-West Local Government Area of Delta State, His Royal Majesty, Oboro Gbaraun II Eketekpe, Agadagba while making the call also appealed to the Niger Delta Avengers not to carry out their fresh threat to ground crude oil installations in the Niger Delta.
Speaking through the Secretary, Gbaramatu Traditional Council, Chief Godspower Gbenekama, the monarch said that the All Progressives Congress (APC) led Federal Government must not toy with the Avengers’ threat, going by available records of the havoc the group meted on the region while hostilities lasted.
“Avengers are not internet-based fighters, so their threats are frightening. And because Gbaramatu is worst hit in terms of military onslaught, we are always the first to call for dialogue and peace.
Currently, we have a very serious trouble in our hand, because the group has said that both the Pan-Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF) and Tompolo, who have been pleading with them to suspend earlier hostility, had failed to get the Federal Government to act.
“What that portrays is that one day, they could come and haunt Tompolo and members of PANDEF, so the Federal Government is only putting these on the firing line,” he said.
According to him, despite the fact that the Buhari led administration had failed to meet her promises, especially the 16-point agenda of PANDEF, there was need to give government more time, saying,
“We admonish the Avengers to sheathe their swords. Whatever is making them angry is justifiable. Oil is the blood of the nation. Destroying oil and gas facilities will do us no good.”
Chief Godspower Gbenekama said,
“It’s one year and two days since PANDEF tendered the 16-point agenda to the president, after pleading with the Avengers. So why won’t they be angry? Perhaps the threats from the Avengers will wake up the Federal Government”.
He lamented that none of the promises made by the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, particularly the N2 billion take off grant to the Nigeria Maritime University, Okerenkoko, the relocation of the Headquaters of International Oil Companies (IOCs), as well as the $16billion Export Processing Zone project have been given considerable attention by the Buhari administration.
“On the Maritime University, nothing seems to be happening. The N2 billion naira which is even small has not been released. All developments are directed to the North. Can you imagine the president telling the World Bank to focus development in the North. Over 80 per cent employment is directed to the North. Does the Federal Government really have the intention to develop the Niger Delta? Now why won’t there be grievances and threats to burst pipeline?”