By Onozure Dania
Prominent Niger Delta former freedom fighter and Senior Special Assistant (General Duties), to Bayelsa State Government, Mr. Goddy Smith, has advised the Federal Government to genuinely implement promises made to the people of Niger Delta to fast tract the desired peace in the region.
Smith, who spoke at his thanksgiving, yesterday, in Warri, Delta State, said: “I was a courageous freedom fighter, a chief priest and respected personality always willing to contribute positively to the growth of our society. Today, I am thanking God for vindicating me over an allegation that I was a leader/sponsor of Niger Delta Avengers. I was arrested innocently on January 7, by JTF and DSS from Abuja, but God intervened and I was declared innocent and released on February 27, 2017.
“Some of us have made huge sacrifices to the Niger Delta struggle, even though we have not seen the impact, but as a man of peace, I strongly appeal to the people of Niger Delta to give peace a chance and allow the Federal Government to develop our communities. The oil facilities and assets are in our communities. It is our responsibility to protect the facilities while constantly discussing with the Federal Government and international oil companies on how to empower our people and develop the region.
“It is very important for the Federal Government to get closer to the oil bearing communities, regularly engaging the genuine stakeholders and leaders on issues and challenges confronting the communities to give the people a sense of belonging.”
He further thanked Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State for his appointment and urged the people of the state to continue to support Dickson in his laudable efforts in transforming the state and bringing dividends of democracy and development to Bayelsa State.