The Niger Delta leaders, under auspices of Pan-Niger Delta Forum on Tuesday requested extension of Ogoni clean-up to other areas of the region.
This was part of the 16-point demands made by the leaders in their meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari describing their requests as “quick wins” to restore hope and confidence in the troubled region.
The demands include allocation of oil blocs to natives of the region, maritime university, stop of military occupation in communities and proper funding of amnesty programme.
Other demands employment opportunities for trained ex-militants and support for internally displaced persons in the region, relocation of international oil companies that have their head offices in Lekki, Lagos and other places back to their areas of operations, infrastructural development, manpower and human resources development, federalism, among others.
Addressing newsmen shortly after the two-hour closed-door meeting with the president, an elder statesman from the region, Edwin Clark said Buhari received them very well.
He said they were not at the Presidential Villa for a battle with Buhari, saying the meeting was a combination of all interest groups.
Clark said, “We have no other country than Nigeria. We cannot continue to destroy the assets of the country and the ecosystem of our environment.”
Meanwhile, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu, said Buhari told the stakeholders that he did not want a quick solution but wanted to dig into what the real problems were.
The meeting was attended by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, the Niger Delta governors, ministers, Chairmen, Senate and House of Representatives committees on Upstream, Downstream and Niger Delta and other political appointees from the region.
Others were Service Chiefs, Inspector-General of Police, Idris Ibrahim and Director-General of Department of State Services (DSS), Lawal Daura, traditional rulers, representatives of militant groups, former governors, civil rights activists and community leaders from the Niger Delta region, including Obong Victor Attah, Timi Aliabe, Diette Spiff, Ledu Mitee, Florence Ita-Giwa, Tony Uranta, Nkoyo Toyo, Sen. Ewa Henshaw, Seminatri Bozimo and Roland Owei.
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