By Egufe Yafugborhi & Akpokona Omafuaire
WARRI—UNITED States of America has again met with Chief Edwin Clark’s Pan Niger Delta Elders Forum, PANDEF, towards finding a lasting solution to the lingering agitations in the region.
Consul Osman Tat, Head, Political/Economic at the US Consulate in Nigeria who led the American peace delegation to PANDEF in Warri, Delta State, said that in furtherance of their engagement with stakeholders, they were in the Niger Delta again, this time, to know the region’s plan for 2019, among other burning issues.
“I will like to listen to you and know what your concerns are, your plan for the future and your plans for 2019 elections,” Tat told Alaowei Broderick Bozimo, who stood in for Chief Clark as PANDEF’s leader at the meeting.
Responding, Bozimo lamented the Federal Government’s alleged injustice to the region which he said had fuelled youths’ anger and destruction of oil assets, adding that the people remain disappointed following government’s failure to respond to the 16-point agenda PANDEF articulated towards a dialogue which government had refused to convene.
He said: “Our visitors, since we submitted the demands, the Federal Government has not implemented a single demand and our youths are becoming restive again.”
Leading Niger Delta rights advocate, Prof. Godini Darah, in his remarks, said all the region wanted was restructuring that will allow the Niger Delta to control her resources and develop at her own pace.
“After 50 years, they (Federal Government) are at the verge of sharing our oil blocks and to prevent a backlash introduced Operation Crocodile Smile II to wedge our youths. This will not save them,” Darah said.