Nigeria (Blank NEWS Online) –By Albert OGRAKA:
The Itsekiri ethnic nationality has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to urgently intervene in the 2017 Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) budget which did not include any specific Federal Project in Itsekiri communities in the distribution of the NDDC projects in the Niger Delta area.
The Itsekiri Communities staged a peaceful protest to the Commission’s office in Warri, Delta state on Thursday, March 30, 2017.
The aggrieved Itsekiri people therefore vowed to resist the continuous oppression and exclusion of the Itsekiri nation in the distribution of projects, which has led to the under development of the communities despite their massive contribution to the country’s revenue.
The Chairman of Warri North Local Government Area, Chief Francis Maku in a statement made available to Blank NEWS Online through his media aide, Mr Lucky Atu, lamented that “an ethnic nationality that is contributing over eighty percent (80%) resources to the Federal Government coffers cannot be said not to have a single project from NDDC while the chunk of projects are distributed to communities that offer little or nothing to the nation’s revenue.”
Chief Francis Maku said, “Good governance means good relationship between the government and the governed. It is only the respect for our human rights that would change our stand on this issue but not tactical deceit and arm twisting.
“There are sufficient issues plaguing us as a people and we cannot seat and watch deprivation of this magnitude before our very eyes. The Itsekiri people believe in justice, fairness and equity, hence this appeal to the relevant authorities and the National Assembly.
“Nigeria is one and some communities cannot claim to be more Nigerian than others. The hijacking of Federal projects to some quarters will steer up strife which can still be avoided at this stage.”
He insisted that the purpose of establishing the Niger Delta Development Commission has been defeated because the people for whom it was established are now victims instead of beneficiaries.
Chief Maku however called on Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari, the budget office and the National Assembly, including the Chairman Senate ccommittee on NDDC and his counterpart in the House of Representatives to urgently look into the ugly trend with a view to finding a lasting solution for the peace and overall development of the nation and the Niger Delta region.
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Nigeria (Blank NEWS Online) –
E.I.C: Albert Eruorhe Ograka