A number of senators last Wednesday condemned the bomb blasts that rocked Vanguard organised post amnesty dialogue in Warri last
Monday. They also called for the establishment of state police as a means of strengthening security at state levels.
Itâ€™s a shame â€”Senator Stella Omu
Former Chief Whip of the Senate, Senator Stella Omu, and now member of the PDP Board of Trustees said: â€œItâ€™s a shame. In a country where we have security agents, a thing like this is happening without being checked. I want to appeal to all Niger Deltans to ensure the region is developed.â€
Itâ€™s insulting â€“ Oyegun
Chief Odigie-Oyegun who was at the venue of the conference when the bombs exploded said it was insulting to the people of region for MEND to plant and detonate bombs at an event organized by a media organization like Vanguard to chart a way forward for the region.
He said: â€œIt shows that these people have no respect for the elders and leaders of the region. How can we be gathered for a programme and they are detonating bombs, according to them, to make a statement. What statement? Are they saying that Niger-Delta people cannot meet again?
â€œItâ€™s unfortunate that such a thing happened, those who did this are disgracing Niger-Delta and humiliating themselves because you cannot be fighting for the region and doing all these.â€
People wonâ€™t be intimidated â€” Delta govt
Delta State Government, in a statement signed by the Commissioner for Information, Mr. Oma Djeba said, â€œThis morning (yesterday), explosives mounted in two cars stationed at about 200 metres away from the venue of the conference organized by Vanguard, entitled â€˜Post-Amnesty Dialogue â€“ Restoring Hope in the Niger Delta,â€™ were detonated.â€
â€œTo protect lives and property, the Governor of Delta State, Dr. Emmanuel Eweta Uduaghan, ordered immediate evacuation of participants to a safe location. The event has been put off by the organizers.
â€œThe peoples of the Niger Delta will not be intimidated nor deterred by the cowardly act of a few opposed to a peaceful and non-violent approach of resolving the historic grievances of the region. We assure all that we will not be deterred in our determination to fast-track the development of our people.â€
Itâ€™s shocking â€“ Clark
â€œI was invited to the post_amnesty dialogue in Warri today (yesterday) and tomorrow (today) but because I have some other things I am doing in Abuja, I could not attend but I was watching the event live when the programme went off and I started calling to find out what happened. Itâ€™s shocking. This is the first time a very serious conference on the post-amnesty programme is being organized to proffer solutions on the way forward and it should be supported.â€
The elder statesman as at the time of speaking to Saturday Vanguard said, he was yet to get information on who carried out the bomb attack and why, stressing that the government should probe the incident to prevent its re-enactment in future.
Govs wonâ€™t be deterred â€“ Orji
Abia State Governor, Theodore Orji who spoke through his media adviser, Ugochukwu Emezue said those behind the act were enemies of progress. He maintained that governors from the zone would not be deterred in their efforts to better the lot of the people, adding, â€œThe governor thanked God that no life was lost.â€
Enemies at work â€” SenatorÂ Okpozo
â€œItâ€™s unfortunate that such incident took place when you had dignitaries lined up from all over the Niger-Delta. I was inside when the first one exploded and we felt it was just to herald the coming of the governors. But, when the second one exploded, it shook the foundation of the entire building and we saw smoke everywhere. It is obvious that those who do not want the progress of the Niger-Delta are behind this. They must have seen that we are going to make progress. This matter must be investigated because it is really bad.â€
Who did it? â€” Chief Harriman
â€œIt is sad that we are trying to move forward yet somebody tried to disrupt it. I wonder who would do this. We are becoming another Iraq.â€
Security agents should beef up security â€”Senator Owie
â€œIt is sad that what Vanguard suffered to put in place for so long, some people came to disrupt it. This is an event that was well planned to ensure that this post amnesty programme of the Federal Government succeeds. This also calls for sober reflection as regards our security in this nation. An event like this, we expect security agencies to beef up security in that area but what it means is that we have no hiding place in this nation any more.
â€œFor such a bomb to be planted at Government House annex where we expect that there will be security, means that the common Nigerian is no longer safe. The incident is very unfortunate and sad and those who perpetrated the act should know that we are all searching for the solution to our problem. They should not have done this at least for the interest of the people of the Niger Delta and Vanguard Newspapers.â€
We shouldâ€™ve gone ahead with confab â€” Prof Pat Utomi
â€œMy opinion is that the conference should not have ended. It should only have been suspended for an hour and every body should have come back. And a clean sweep of the neighbourhood would take place because if the object of whoever did it was to disrupt, then you have handed that person victory. But the person might have a different objective.
It could be just the way some people had suggested, to make a statement to signal that look we can still talk. Importantly, what the whole thing signals to me, is the need for us to become more intensive or to do more in solving our problems? I am concerned about the future because everywhere you look at in Nigeria you see time bombs. If you look at Kano, five million kids not going to school, begging for alms.