By Dapo Akinrefon
THE Professor Pat Utomi-led coalition of all Niger Delta ethnic nationalities and civil society, United Niger Delta Energy Development Security Strategy, UNDEDSS, has thrown its weight behind President Goodluck Jonathan’s second term bid.
The group also appealed to Nigerians to fully support the Nigerian military in the ongoing war against terrorism in Nigeria.
In a statement by it Secretary-General, Mr. Tony Iprinye Uranta, UNDEDSS noted that the region’s leaders have “observed with growing apprehension the citizenry’s disconnect from the military even though all of Nigeria depends on the military in the ongoing fight against terror.”
It said “maybe, Nigerians are so carried away with petty partisan political wranglings that they seem to be really oblivious to the dangers posed by the increasing levels of terrorism, both global and in Nigeria. If we do not, calculatedly and consciously support our fighting forces, or if we continue to help paint terrorists in positive light, as many politicians and journalists are myopically wont of doing, we will deprive our troops of their most potent weapon, which is disciplined high morale!”
The group further stated that the region supports President Jonathan’s 2015 re-election bid, “but cautions that the President must be seen to be more inclusive in running the affairs of state; be more dependent on merit-biased [instead of merely political! advisers; more ready to call erring public officers to order, publicly, to exhibit transparent commitment to the rule-of-law; and, to generally show to Nigerians, and all the world, that his administration is truly nation-focused, not partisan in leanings.”
While suing for peace, UNDEDSS lamented the recent “brouhaha engulfing the National Assembly”, even as it lauded Senate President David Mark’s timely “troubleshooting efforts, and calls for all parties to respect the rule-of-law; noting that multiple wrongs never make a right.”