The Federal Government of Nigeria has sought the assistance and collaboration of the United Nations (UN) to maintain peace and development of the Niger Delta region.
Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, who stated this when the UN deputy secretary general, Hajia Amina Mohammed, paid a courtesy visit to his office yesterday, noted that the Niger Delta region remains the most peaceful region in Nigeria.
Akpabio revealed that the Buhari administration was developing a programme “Catch Them Young”, where young people in primary and secondary schools are enlightened on the importance of peace and the dangers of destroying oil installations, which has serious impact on the ecosystem and the nation’s economy.
In a statement signed by the director, press and public relations, in the ministry, Deworitshe Patricia, which was made available to LEADERSHIP in Abuja on Wednesday, the minister said that since the discovery of crude oil in the region in 1956, several interventionist agencies had been set up to address the social and environmental degradation of the area, but they have all failed to provide the needed succour to the people.
He maintained that in order to address the situation, the present administration decided to set up a forensic auditing process to access and evaluate the achievements that have been made by NDDC in the region since its inception.
In her response, the United Nations deputy secretary general, Amina Mohammed, stated that issues bothering on the Niger Delta region are peculiar to the heart of the UN and would do everything within UN programmes to address all issues of disillusionment in people’s expectation.
She commended the efforts of the Federal Government and the ministry in the way they have handled the Niger Delta affairs and laid emphasis on the need to maintain peace and stability in the region, because without peace there cannot be any meaningful development especially when the aspirations and rights of the people are not recognised.