By EMMA AMAIZE
MOVEMENT for the Emancipation of the Niger-Delta (MEND) says emancipation will come faster than expected for the Niger-Delta if the South-South Governors sustain the tempo of their current agitation against unjust laws and policies against the region. It also says it is erroneous for anyone to say its recent attack on the Atlas Cove Jetty in Lagos was directed at the Yoruba and therefore insists it has no apology over the attack.
Meanwhile, the South-South Governors are expected to meet this week in Abuja with President Umaru Yarâ€™Adua in Abuja to present their grievances. Spokesman for MEND, Jomo Gbomo, responding to an inquiry from Sunday Vanguard, said: â€œIf the governors who are known to speak from both sides of their mouth are really sincere thisÂ time, the emancipation of the Niger Delta will beÂ expeditedâ€.
Also, the Niger-Delta People Volunteer Force (NDPVF)/People Salvation Front (PSF), led by Alhaji Mujaheeden Dokubo-AsariÂ in a statement by its spokesman, Rex Anighoro commended the governors for embracing the genuine agitation of their people and urged five of the six governors that are in the PDP to begin the process of decamping from the party because the salvation of the region does not lie there.
Said MEND, â€œWe are relieved to see that Professor Soyinka has averted what would have resulted into a senseless tribal war where cowardly attacks on harmless civilians would have been the order of the day. MEND will never be involved in such attacks against any tribe living amongst us even when we are provokedâ€.
â€œIf MEND attacked the Yoruba Tennis Club during a function then it would be obvious that it was directed at a tribe. Atlas Cove was guarded by the Navy made up of every tribe and we can not over emphasis the fact that we see the Atlas Cove as a legitimate target owned by the Federal Government whose oil assets we have been attacking since 2006. Some elders just woke up with a headache that belongs to the NNPC and have decided to take Panadol Extra on their behalf.
We refuse to apologize for this attack which was deliberate and condemn any group that is apologizing on our behalf.Â As long as the FGN fails to do the right thing in the Niger Delta, the entire country must brace itself for the worse as no part of the country is immune from the curse of the black gold.â€