Return To Niger Delta, Ex-Agitators Beg Companies


By Caleb Tamunosaki

Former agitators in the Niger Delta have called on oil firms who left the region to return to the region.

The leaders of the ex- militant groups reassured the companies and the nation of their readiness to work for the sustenance of peace and stability in the region.

The ex-agitators spoke during a regional peace summit in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, to sensitise people on the need to promote and sustain the peace currently being enjoyed in the region.

Over 150 youths from the state attended the summit, condemned the operation of illegal refineries in the state which they said was inimical to the health of the people.

One of the ex agitators who spoke after the event, Nature Dumale Kieghe, said that the group has strong faith in the vision of the Interim Administrator of the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP), Col. Milland Dikio (retd).

Kieghe who said that they have resolved to work for a better region maintained that peace remained a vital tool to attract investors to the region which would in turn create business and job opportunities for the youths.

He said, “Companies that have left the Niger Delta because of insecurity need to return, this is the purpose of our sensitisation. We are blessed with an environment that is supposed to prosper us, we can only enjoy our natural resources if there is a peaceful environment.

“We, who once carried guns, are now here to preach the message of peace to our people in the region. Peace is the only way we can have the developed environment of our dream. Peace is the only way to attract the multinationals, investors and also to be gainfully employed.

“It is important to sensitise our people towards a peaceful Niger Delta and create a friendly environment that will attract development, multinational oil companies and other foreign investors to the region.”

Kieghe further noted that a major setback to the development of the region was the absence of proper coordination among key stakeholders.

According to him, the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs, Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Ministry of Environment, Ministry of Petroleum Resources and the PAP Office could accelerate the development of the region with the right synergy.

He said beyond hindering the development of the region, illegal refining of petroleum products was dangerous to human health and the ecosystem.


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