- Militants reject FG’s olive branch
- New group, Ultimate Warriors of N/Delta emerges
- We’re unaware of any Buhari, Jonathan, N/Delta group meeting – Britain
Niger Delta Avengers, NDA, has revealed that it has rejected federal government’s call for the group to embrace dialogue.
However, in a twitter message the group posted yesterday morning, the group said, “This is to the gen. public we’re not negotiating with any Committee. If Fed Govt is discussing with any group they’re doing that on their own.”
The group said that it had not authorised anyone to participate in this meeting.
It also claimed to have blown up Well RMP 20 belonging to Chevron located 20 metres away from Dibi Flow Stattion in Warri North LGA.
It would be recalled that the last sabotage carried out by the group was the June 3 attack on the 48-inches Forcados export terminal pipeline belonging to SPDC.
The oil facilities are located in Ogulaha and Odimodi communities in Burutu Local Government Area of Delta.
Minister of State for Petroleum Resources and Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, while calling on the group to drop arms and embrace discussion, expressed the federal government’s readiness to check the resurgence of pipeline sabotage in the region.
Dr. Kachikwu said all the stakeholders resolved that solutions to the incessant attacks on oil and gas pipelines were within the communities, stressing that communities were now saddled with the responsibility of ensuring protection of pipelines within their domains.
He added that all the states in the region would nominate four or five representatives that would work hand-in-hand with security agencies to secure oil facilities in their respective states.
The minister further stated that it was resolved that violence was not an option in resolving the problems of the Niger Delta and that all threats from the region should end henceforth.
He stated that there was need to reach out to all other stakeholders who were not part of the meeting to embrace peace and dialogue.
According to him, there was need to restructure the Amnesty Programme so as to address the critical issue of neglect by the government and international oil companies.
“The Niger Delta governors must be involved in providing lasting solutions to the resurgence of pipeline vandalism and there is urgent need to create business opportunities for the locals in the region,” Dr. Kachikwu stated.
Efforts to get Mr Deji Haastrup, the Chevron general manager in charge of Policies, Government and Public Affairs, to comment on the development were unsuccessful.
New group, Ultimate Warriors of Niger Delta emerges
While the Federal government is grappling with the threat of New Avengers, another militant group, Ultimate Warriors of Niger Delta, has emerged. The new group in a statement yesterday threatened to continue attacks on oil and gas facilities unless government concedes 60% t oil blocs to the people of the region.
They also requested that part of their condition to drop arms and end hostilities is for government expedite action on $16 billion Export Processing Zone otherwise called Delta Gas City project begin operations in earnest.
It, however, gave the government a two-week ultimatum to ensure that their demands were adequately met for a lasting ceasefire in the region.
Spokesperson of Ultimate Warrior, as it chose to be addressed, Sibiri Taiowoh, in a statement obtained by our correspondent, said if the FG truly wants peace in the region, it should award 60 per cent oil bloc to indigenous people from the region as its primary demand for a ceasefire.
The statement signed by Sibri Taiowoh, its spokesperson and which gave the federal government two weeks to meet their demands states “We are also behind the recent pipeline bombing in the Niger Delta region and I can assure you we will not stop until the EPZ project and the Maritime University are totally completed and start operations.
“We want to be the ones to be safe guarding oil pipeline in our area so as to create more jobs for our people. We would resist any attempt to give surveillance contracts of pipeline in our backyard to foreigners. We want the pipeline jobs to be given to our indigenous people.”
“We also want 60 per cent of the oil blocs to be allocated to the Niger Deltans just as the Federal Government has also allocated 80 per cent to those who are not from the oil producing area and just as 50 per cent of the resource was used to develop the non-oil area when we were producing cocoa and groundnut as main economic resources, the same 50 percent should be use to develop the Niger Delta region because we are the ones suffering the brunt of oil pollution and degradation in the region”, it further added.
We’re unaware of any Buhari, Jonathan, N/Delta group meeting – Britain
Meanwhile, British government has distanced itself from media reports suggesting that Britain set up a meeting between President Buhari, Ex-President Goodluck Jonathan and some militants in London. A statement made available to Nigerian Pilot by British High Commission in Abuja states; “Media reports suggesting that the British Government has set up a meeting with President Buhari, former President Jonathan and representatives of Niger Delta groups to discuss a solution to recent violence in the Niger Delta region are incorrect. We are aware that President Buhari is currently in London seeking medical attention. We are not aware of ant meetings on Niger Delta while he is there.”