A militant group, Niger Delta Revolutionary Crusaders (NDRC), has threatened to resume hostilities over the three per cent allocated to host communities in the recently passed Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) by the National Assembly, which it describes as unfavourable.
The group described the PIB as a coup against people of the oil-rich Niger Delta by the Nigerian State.
The militants, in a statement yesterday, by its spokesperson, WO 1 Izon-Ebi, condemned the three per cent, as well as 30 per cent for exploration of frontier basins in the passed bill.
In the statement titled, “We Will Defend Our God Given Resources”, the militant group said it would fight until obnoxious sections in the PIB are reviewed by the National Assembly, threatening that its commanders have returned to the creeks of the Niger Delta region waiting to strike.
“For 56 years, the region has suffered desecration of its sacred places like worship centres, lands, streams, lakes and severe environmental degradation without remediation.”
“While the government and people of Zamfara State are allowed to control 100 per cent of their gold resource (fiscal federalism applying in Zamfara State), what the people of the Niger Delta region could get from their own natural resource is a paltry three per cent for host communities and in contrast, a whopping 30 per cent for exploration of frontier basins.
“This is an economic coup against people of the region; it is an insult, a daylight robbery and betrayal by Nigerian government. The region embraced peace because it was the most civilised thing to do in order to give way for proper dialogue, genuine government commitment and re-idealogical construct about the Niger Delta region.
“Unfortunately, about 11 years of giving peace a chance in the region, the Nigerian government has rather become ruthless to the region through obnoxious statutes. These are our genuine concerns and grievances.”
The spokesman stated that they have directed their commanders in the region to return to the creeks and wait for further directive on the next line of action.
“We will defend our resources and protect our region from further mindless pillage of our God given resources,” the statement further added.