The Itsekiri National Youth Council (INYC) president, Mr. Esimaje Awani, has warned of looming anarchy in the oil region of Niger Delta should the Federal Government fail to impartially and carefully handle issues in the region.
Faulting the region’s developmental proposals before the Federal Government, which the group said was tailored to favour only one ethnic group in the oil region, INYC called on President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration to live up to the expectations of other ethnic groups in Niger Delta or have a situation where people “take laws into their hands, carry guns and blow up pipelines and have their demands met even if they are against the laws of the land.”
The statement read, “I can say authoritatively that some of the proposals currently on the table do not constitute sustainable solution in a civilised society but only amount to negotiation of the very values upon which civilised societies rest.
“Unfortunately, these proposals have been placed on the front burner of issues obviously because they are intended to achieve ignoble aims, including to illegally claim territories belonging to other ethnic groups, making it appear therefore, that there is only one ethnic group in the Niger Delta region.
“I call on the Federal Government to either be a government or accept that Nigeria is a failed state, in which case, people should be allowed to take laws into their hands, carry guns and blow up pipelines and have their demands met even if they are against the laws of the land.”
Also raised as a serious issue of concern in the region by INYC President was the yet to be determined issue of the naming of the proposed Nigeria Maritime University.
The Supreme Court had named Okerenghigho as the place to site the university but there have been contentions over the decision.
On this Awani said, “The Nigerian Government should not be seen as acting against itself by succumbing to blackmail in the face of the judgment of the highest court of the land with respect to the naming of the site of the university.
“By the pronouncement of the Supreme Court on the issue, the place remains Okerenghigho and not Okerenkoko and if any group of people is interested in having a university in the area, I believe that will be the Itsekiri, but why should the executive arm of government act against the judicial arm?
“We want to beg the government not to reward lawlessness because the ability to disrupt the flow of oil pipelines is not the exclusive preserve of one tribe. Those who elect not to destroy oil facilities should never be taken for granted.”
He further called on the Federal Government to ensure it acts on the side of the law and established global practices and not allow itself fall to cheap blackmail.
He warned that anything contrary to justice will provoke anarchy which “several other tribes within the region will gladly honour.”
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