The leadership of Urhobo Youth Leaders Association, UYLA has pleaded with President Buhari to hearken to the voice of the people of the Niger Delta yearning for the urgent inauguration of the members nominated for appointment by President Muhammadu Buhari, screened and confirmed by members of the National Assembly into the Board of Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC.
This decision was made at the end of an emergency meeting held weekend at Oghior in Udu Local Government Area of Delta State.
In a statement signed by the National President of the UYLA, Olorogun Tony Ofoni , the group noted that the delay in constituting the NDDC Board has generated too many issues in the region with the tendency to ignite ethnic crises within the region.
“Many issues in the social media are not pleasing, thank God everything is being handled maturely and we hope Mr President will do the needful by inaugurating the already screened and confirmed Board members,” the group said.
In addition, they said that many ethnic groups are now laying claim to the title of highest producers of oil and gas in the region to drive home their selfish points.
“Be it noted that the good people of Urhobo have never tampered with Government oil and gas facilities but those who claim to be the highest producers of oil and gas have continuously sabotaged the economy of this nation.
“Nigeria should reward peaceful citizens who are law abiding by encouraging them so as not to pick up arms to join those attacking oil installations.
“Urhobo youths have never destroyed oil and Gas facilities in our land despite the fact that we are the highest producers of oil and Gas right now.
“The only Government agency that can contradict these claims because of records available to them is the Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR”, the group said.
The Youth leaders therefore appealled to President Buhari to inaugurate the Board he nominated for appointment earlier which has been screened and confirmed.
“Mr President, it will make mockery of your administration to shop for new hands when the ones already nominated are there.
“It will appear you bow to pressure of some selfish individuals in the Niger Delta to ignore and go back to tinker with the Board that has been constituted, awaiting swearing-in.
“This has never happened in the history of democracy in Nigeria. No President has had his screened and confirmed nominees replaced even before they were sworn in.
“The National Assembly has honoured you by carrying out their legitimate duties by screening and confirming those nominated earlier.
“If you go ahead to make fresh appointments into the Board as being canvassed by enemies of the region, you would have thrown your integrity to the winds,” they said.
The group added that it is within the purview of the office of the President to appoint, after which the National Assembly screens and confirms them.
“Mr President should please conclude the process by inaugurating the Board already confirmed by NASS to diffuse the divide and rule process already being applied by some agents of your government whose intention is to cause chaos in the region,” the group concluded.”