…say their actions could result in ethnic clashes
By Festus Ahon
NIGER Delta Youth Council, NDYC, has taken a swipe at the protest of Governors of the region against the composition of those appointed into the board of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, saying their actions could result to unnecessary ethnic clashes in the oil-rich region.
Reacting to the protest of the governors, the group, in a communique issued at the end of their emergency meeting in Ikot Abasi, Akwa Ibom State, noted the that the Act empowering the commission required “them to play Advisory role in a constituted Board and not as regards the Constitution of the Board.”
Saying that the governors were acting in futility, the group, in the communique signed by its President, Comrade Daniel Etaga, Secretary, Mr Fred Iboro and Director for Strategic Communications, Mr Henry Oghwere said the Governors lacked the moral justification or constitutional leverage to advice Mr President on his nominees.
The communique read: “For clarity of purpose, Section 3 of the NDDC Act states that the President can nominate members and same section gave premise for rotation of the MD on the quantity of oil produced by member states and by virtues of that, Delta state qualify for the position of MD after Rivers State and Akwa Ibom which has produced the last MD of the Board.
“The Act also states that the Chairman of NDDC rotation should be by alphabetical order and this has automatically placed Delta State to qualify for both positions of Chairman and Managing Director.
“Despite this, let us not forget that the President has the final decision. So if the President in his magnanimous nature decided that Delta state should get the MD and leave the Chairman for Edo State that has been short change over the years, the President, therefore, has made the right decision.
“We must not play dirty politics with the development of the Region. The Ijaws have always produced Executive Directors and Acting MD either from Delta, Bayelsa and Rivers because of their heritage cutting across these states.
“The Niger Delta region is not some persons’ cocoyam farm and must not be tied to one ethnicity or state. This is the time for serious business that will bring developments and not the time for divisiveness with the aim of causing conflicts among the various ethnic groups because Mr President refused to listen to some cabals.
“NDYC is ready to mobilize the youths from the Nine States of NDDC to stop anybody or group of person who has vowed to disrupt the process as the choice of Bernard Okumagba as Managing Director and Pius Odubu as Chairman because these are seasoned Administrators with the ability to bring Development to the region and in facts, it is the best thing that has ever happen to the region.
“The call to set aside the nominees are from mischief-makers who do not want development of the Region. We use this medium to appeal to President Muhammadu Buhari to declare a state of emergency on the East-West road as the project has suffered a major setback over the years”.