Mobilize Ijaw elders to prevail on Buhari not to end amnesty programme, group tells Diri

Abuja—The Niger Delta Nonviolence Agitators Forum (NDNAF) has urged Governor Douye Diri of Bayelsa State to mobilize Ijaw Elders and meet President Muhammadu Buhari to prevail on him to jettison the planned winding down of the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP).

The group opined that over 85% of the crude oil and gas that is being used to run the day-to-day affairs of the country is from Ijaw land, hence Nigeria cannot survive without crude oil and gas wealth from Ijaw land.

In a statement on Tuesday by its president, Comrade Wisdom Ikuli, the group stated that Ijaws were criminalised through the Amnesty Programme but have continued to contribute to the peace, unity, growth and development of the country.

“President Muhammadu Buhari and his handlers cannot wake up to decide to wind down the programme because of the relative peace in the Niger Delta.

“There is a need for them to know the far-reaching Negative Implications of their planned hasty decision whose attendant consequences may be too grave.

“This present administration has few months in office, it should not end up creating unimaginable problems for the incoming administration.
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“Since the discovery of crude oil and gas in Ijaw land precisely at Oloibiri-Otabagi in Ogbia Local Government Area of Bayelsa State in 1956, the amnesty program is the only thing that is making our great people to feel little positive impacts of our wealth that is used to develop other parts of the country at the expense and detriment of our great people,” the statement reads in part.

Ikuli who is also the Executive Director, Peace for Peace Advocacy and Social Rehabilitation (CPASR) further reiterated the group’s resolve to “resist any attempt to scrap the only thing that is giving our great people little sense of belonging.

“All men and women of goodwill need to speak out against the move that is threatening to throw the Niger Delta region into another round of unrest.”

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