Ijaw youths have threatened to storm the National Assembly in support of senators from the region for rejecting the Bill for an Act to amend the NDDC Act sponsored by Senator Olamilekan Adeola (APC, Lagos West).
Through the Ijaw Youths Council (IYC) Worldwide, they called out ex-militant leaders, including High Chief Government Ekpemupolo (Tompolo), Dr Ebikabowei Victor Ben (Boyloaf), His Royal Majesty and the Amanyanabo of Okochiri Kingdom, King Ateke Tom and Chief Bibopere Ajube (Shoot-at-sight) not to be silent over the shameful treatment being meted on the region by those they referred to as Abuja- based politicians under the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.
The IYC, in a statement issued in Yenagoa by its national spokesman, Comrade Ebilade Ekerefe, while commending the deputy senate president, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege (APC, Delta Central) and other members of the National Assembly for their position on the Bill for an Act to amend the NDDC Act, said the youths back them on their vehement rejection, which they described as bold and commendable.
Ekerefe said, “Their total rejection showed that the National Assembly members from the region have further shown that there are still men of honour from the Niger Delta region, unlike others who have continued to treat their region with disdain despite the transient positions they are holding at the moment.
Second, the proposed bill for the inclusion of these strange bedfellows to the NDDC goes to confirm our repeated positions that the Niger Delta region have become ‘a toy’ to be played with by politicians in Abuja and the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.”
He urged ‘freedom fighters’ in the region to rise up and speak out, insisting that their continued silence is no longer golden on the various issues of neglect, lack of development and other contentious issues including the non-setting up of the NDDC board, the mass purge of Niger Delta indigenes from the NNPC and the exclusion of major roads in the region from the planned NNPC road construction.
According to the IYC, “Your silence has made ‘interlopers’ to add insult upon injury and calling for the merging of what may later remain of the NDDC after it is merged with the Ministry of the Niger Delta Affairs and taken to Abuja for the final burial. Niger Delta will now become empty and begging for carcasses. The IYC will be calling on our various structures in Northern Nigeria to occupy the National Assembly to resist this obnoxious bill anytime it is brought back to the floor of the senate for further debate by these interlopers from the South-West region.”