By Emma Amaize

IJAW National Congress, INC, the apex pan-Ijaw socio-cultural organisation (Eastern zone) weekend, insisted that the provision of three percent for host communities, classification of host communities as “any area in Nigeria and beyond” and allocation of a whopping 30 percent for exploration of the frontier basin in the Petroleum Industry Act, PIA, 2021 are completely objectionable to the Ijaw ethnic nationality.

The group in a communique by the National President, Prof. Benjamin Okaba, and others, after a town hall meeting, weekend, in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, noted that “any area in Nigeria and beyond” described in the PIA could be Niger Republic.

Members of the national executive committee of INC, eastern zonal and clan executive committee members, traditional rulers, and clan heads from the zone, notably, HRM King Bright Fiboinumama, Amanyanabo of Abuloma; HRM King I.N.C. Herbert, Agbanijeka XVIII, Amanyanabo of ancient Billy Kingdon; HRH Chief Iraron Ede, Obolo II, and erudite Ijaw scholars, including Alabo Emritus Professor Dagogo Fubara, Prof. E. S. Bartimaeus and Prof. A. W. Obianime attended the one-day meeting chaired by Okaba.

The communique read in part: “INC still insists that the three percent provision for host communities, definition of host communities as ‘any area in Nigeria and beyond,’ which may include the Niger Republic and others, and the allocation of a whopping 30 percent provision for the exploration of the frontier basins in the PIA, 2021, remains totally unacceptable to the Ijaw nation.

“That the ljaw nation frowns at the over politicisation, sectionalisation, and commercialisation of the new NNPC management structure, particularly as it relates to most of its top and sensitive positions held by persons from a section of this country without respect for the Federal Character principles.

“That the re-introduced National Water Resources Bill on the floor of the House of Representatives is an obnoxious piece of legislation and a brazen attempt by the Federal Government to annex the resources, territory, and basic source of livelihood and identity of Ijaw people.”

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