Governors, monarchs, ministers to hold crisis meeting on Niger Delta
Leaders from Rivers, Delta, Akwa Ibom, Edo, Bayelsa and Cross River States are scheduled to meet and find solution to continued unrest and destruction of critical oil infrastructure by militant groups in the Niger Delta.
Ijaw national leader, Chief Edwin Kiagbodo Clark, and former Minister of Police Affairs, Chief Broderick Bozimo, who made the disclosure, said the all encompassing meeting would hold on Friday at the conference centre of the Petroleum Training Institute, Effurun, near Warri, and would be attended my incumbent governors, ex-governors, traditional rulers, politicians and ex-ministers, among others.
Clark noted that a similar meeting under the South South Peoples Assembly (SSPA) was convened in 2009 when the region was embroiled in unrest and invasion by soldiers, and that its was as a result of the collective exchange of ideas by leaders of all the ethnic groups and subsequent consultation with government that a way was paved for the amnesty initiative.
Clark said leaders in the region decided to intervene because various militant groups had emerged and were destroying vital infrastructure to capture the attention of government, adding that the destruction of such infrastructure was not a solution to neglect and marginalisation.
Clark disclosed that after the leaders of the region have met, the next move would be a meeting with all the militant groups, with a view to settling their grievances and restoring peace.
Also speaking at the pre-conference meeting, yesterday, Bozimo said the urgency in convening the meeting was because “things were happening so fast that we can’t wait to send formal invitation to everyone. We are in a serious crisis. We have been trying to manage the Ijaw end, but we are worried that there are copycats who are imitating the Niger Delta Avengers. So, we felt there should be a holistic approach.”