A group, Concerned Northern Forum (CNF) in collaboration with civil society groups in Northern Nigeria has asked President Muhammadu Buhari to use the N48 billion for pipeline surveillance contract in the Niger Delta to tackle the security challenges facing the country.
It also called for an end to the subsidy regime which it considers as a scam while advocating for a state of emergency in the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Limited (NNPCLtd). It demanded for the sack of the management and replacing it with military administrators.
According to the group, “We urge the Federal Government to channel the 48 billion Naira Tompolo will be earning annually to address the developmental and environmental need of the Niger Delta people and provision of security in Nigeria, rather than sharing such funds for the boys.
“It is a known fact that our country and most importantly, the Northern region is profusely bleeding human bloods, as a result of activities of terrorists which includes but not limited to Islamic State in West Africa (ISWAP), Boko Haram, Banditry, Farmers/Herders clashes etc. All efforts by government seems to yield no results as the terrorist keep terrorizing our communities daily.
“While crude oil can be purchased in the market, the life of an individual is sacrosanct and can only be given by God. We wonder why the government we overwhelmingly voted for, would choose to pay attention to crude oil theft, more than the lives and properties of our people that voted them to power.”
It said the contract awarded to ex-Niger Delta militant leader, Tompolo, will only teach the youths, that it is better to be thugs and fugitives than loyal citizen. It said with incidences like these, they have no choice than to answer the calls by some Northern governors to defend themselves against the banditry and kidnapping bedeviling their region, adding that this will lead to the use of weapons which will later result in another big problem in the future.
Addressing a world press conference in Kaduna yesterday, the chairman of the Concerned Northern Forum, Malam Ibrahim Bature, said the “group has deduced that the subsidy regime which has regularly stopped the NNPC from contributing revenue into the Federation Account for sharing during FAAC meetings is the greatest crime being perpetrated against Nigerians which has denied them infrastructural development.
“Hence, the federal government should consider ending the subsidy, so as to take the feeding bottle away from the mouths of cartels stealing our common wealth through the subsidy regime.
“The northern group also vehemently reject and oppose the pipeline Surveillance Contract the NNPC limited awarded to Tompolo, hence, it should be terminated with immediate effect.
“We also demand a declaration of state of emergency in the NNPC Ltd and the appointment of military administrators to watch over the affairs of the company pending when investigation will be concluded into the subsidy regime that is costing the country trillions of naira annually.
“NNPCL management should not even try to make fool of Nigerians by saying both Nigerian Navy and Nigerian Custom are envious of them and trying to sabotage their hard work. We have realized the real oil theft is not done on the pipeline but in the office,” he said.