By Emma Amaize
Campaigners under the auspices of 21st Century Youths of Niger Delta and Agitators with Conscience, 21st CYNDAC, yesterday, opposed the planned protest by Ijaw Youth Council, IYC, Movement for the Survival of the Ijaw Ethnic Nationality in the Niger-Delta, MOSIEND, and other stakeholders against the Minister of Niger-Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, for defiantly running the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, with a Sole Administrator.
Coordinator of 21st CYNDAC, self-styled “General” Izon Ebi, in a statement, said: “We strongly condemn the planned sponsored protest and campaign of calumny scheduled to tomorrow (today) against the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio and NDDC by some unpatriotic and unscrupulous elements of the IYC and MOSIEND.”
Pointing out that the protest was “to intimidate and blackmail the minister for their selfish gains,” the group cautioned: “IYC is a very respected organization of Ijaw youths formed to champion very important and pressing issues of the Ijaw nation and Niger Delta in particular, so it must not be hijacked by few selfish and criminally- minded individuals to portray the revered organization and our region in a bad light because of their greedy and selfish desire to make quick money by all costs.”
“The IYC and MOSIEND are not the only youth organizations in the Niger Delta region, therefore, they should not be seen doing the bidding of their sponsors to set the Niger Delta ablaze.
“Senator Akpabio is a man of integrity and proven track record of development and is determined to replicate the same fit in the entire Niger Delta region as the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs and supervisory minister over NDDC. Under his watch in just a few months, we have all seen the achievements from the stoppage of 1 billion dollars consultancy fees to the commissioning of the headquarters building of the NDDC.
“We, therefore, use this medium to call on the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari to ignore the antics of the enemies of development to stop the conclusion and publication of the forensic audit instituted by Mr President.
“21st CYNDAC calls on all well-meaning youths of the Niger Delta region to be calm and support Senator Akpabio, who we have discovered means well for Niger Delta region,” the group added.