Water Resources Amendments: We shall resist take over of our ancestral waters, lands — UNDEDSS





Tony Uranta*Tony Uranta

By Dapo Akinrefon

The United Niger Delta Energy Development Security Strategy, UNDEDSS, on Wednesday, warned the Federal Government that the Niger Delta will resist the obnoxious Water Resources Amendments and prevent a take over of its ancestral waters and lands.

UNDEDSS, a coalition of Niger Delta civil societies, stated this in a statement by its Secretary-General, Mr Tony Uranta.

Uranta said: “This Federal Government must come to realise that no part of Nigeria is a conquered province and that the erstwhile insults heaped on the Niger Delta must end forthwith.

Also read: NDDC: Set up judicial investigative panel to probe all graft allegations, NEBPRIL tells Buhari

“For too long our region has been the whipping boy of Nigeria. Whenever any national leader wants to appear to be serious about the war against corruption, the focus is the Niger Delta, its governor’s et al.

Then you will hear questions like, ‘What have you used the 13% derivative for?’ Nobody asks what has been derived from the 87% that goes to the rest of the country, even though over 95% of revenues come from our bastardized and despoliation waters and land! For example, recently the NDDC has come under unnecessarily excessive fire, not because its corruption is worse, but because everybody seeks to sweep under the carpet the comparatively obscenely humongous amounts being looted via the NNPC, the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, the North East Development Commission, the CBN, the FIRS, to name a few MDAs being looted by parties close to Mr President and the National Assembly Leadership.”

Besides, the UNDEDSS scribe stated that: “We have said with nausea that we know that

Niger Delta leaders are as corrupt as virtually all other leaders are, but that we expect that what is good for the goose that lays the golden eggs for all, must be good for the parasitic ganders that contribute next to nothing to the national GDP.

Yet nobody listens to the region, not even our erstwhile friend the new Chief of Staff.

“And, now, to rub insult into our injuries, the Federal Government thinks we shall let it take over our ancestral waters and lands. They may rig the NASS, but we shall call on every ally within and outside the country to resist these diabolical amendments. Many forget how far-reaching our tentacles really are, inside and outside Nigeria and. May we never need to remind them.”

“Appointments are made onto bodies that exist ostensibly for the region’s good without inputs from our key political, traditional or socio-cultural leaders, and even the NDDC still has Board members who are not even remotely connected to the region. Yet, no Niger Deltan is on, say, the North East Development Commission NEDC Board, nor are strategically and adequately represented on the oil and gas bodies that owe more than 95% existence to the region! Enough is enough,” he said.

UNDEDSS also noted that by demanding that the Federal Government immediately implements the 16-point 2016 Agreement between it and the region as reached in several meetings between the President and both UNDEDSS and PANDEF, respectively.

He, however, warned that should the Federal Government not show a willingness, before the end of 14days from the date of this statement, to dynamically embrace the region, via its leaders, it “shall withdraw from the unilateral ceasefire in the region, which it helped broker, and leave the Federal Government to get itself out of the morass that will ensue.”

Vanguard News

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