By Samuel Oyadongha, YENAGOA
THE leadership and entire members of Pan Niger Delta Forum, PANDEF, have expressed sadness over the demise of it’s founding member, Mr. Tony Uranta.
PANDEF, in a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Ken Robinson noted with regret that the South South geopolitical zone and Nigeria, have lost another brave and dependable voice in the volitions for a just and egalitarian nation.
The statement read: “Tony Uranta was a strong advocate for peace, unity, social rights and sustainable development.
“A great mobilizer, he continuously rallied various persuasions to set people-centered agenda in the quests for a better Niger Delta and Nigeria.
“As a founding member of PANDEF, Tony Uranta, in the Central Working Committee, worked assiduously, contributing to the drafting of the 16-Point Demand.
“The demands embody core and fundamental issues that cut across all segments of the coastal states of the Niger Delta Region, which PANDEF presented to President Muhammadu Buhari on November 1, 2016, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
“Tony was a tireless champion for human rights: a fervent and ingenious compatriot, dogged and unflinching.
“He devoted his life to the service of humanity. He contributed many decades to furthering the patriotic ideals and purposes of the Niger Delta people and Nigerians, through his membership of the Pan Niger Delta Forum, PANDEF, the United Niger-Delta Energy Development Security Strategy, UNDEDSS, and the Nigeria National Summit Group, among several other initiatives.
“Tony Uranta was also a great proponent of Restructuring Nigeria; he held that if Nigeria is to become a truly great Country, it must be premised on justice, equity and fairness.
“He was well known throughout the civil and human rights community, not just for his clever articulacy, but also for his human warmth.
“His efforts and selfless services earned him the respect and admiration of many across the Niger-Delta Region and the entire Country.
“Tony Uranta’s passing is a big loss for PANDEF, the Niger-Delta Region and Nigeria.
“He will be greatly missed and remembered for his intellectual strength, passion, genuine commitment and, more especially, for his life-long dedication to issues of the Niger-Delta region, human rights and justice.
“PANDEF mourns his passing with his family, relatives, friends and compatriots. Our prayers are with his wife and children at this time.
“May the Almighty God grant his soul eternal rest!”