Ijaw Youths Want ‘Unfair Allocation’ Of Oil Blocks Probed

The Ijaw Youth Council Worldwide on Monday warned that there would be more hostilities in the Niger Delta region unless President Muhammadu Buhari probes unfair allocation of oil blocks in the country.

The IYC President, Mr. Udengs Eradiri, gave the warning at a news conference at the Ijaw House, Yenagoa, as part of activities to celebrate this year’s Isaac Boro Day.

Many shops in Yenagoa, the Bayelsa State capital, were shut on Monday following a directive by the IYC that shop owners should not open for business as a mark of honour for Boro.

Eradiri’s warning came barely five days after the Niger Delta Avengers listed some oil blocks allegedly owned by former Vice-President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar; a former Minister of Defence, Gen. Theophilus Danjuma; ex-Minister of Petroleum, Alhaji Riwalnu Lukman; and other northerners and south-westerners in the region.

The NDA had among others issued them a two-week ultimatum to shut down operations at the oil blocks and evacuate their workers from the locations or have them attacked.

Eradiri said that the indiscriminate sharing of oil blocks were allegedly carried out when Buhari served as Petroleum minister or Head of State.

He accused the President of denying Niger Delta people ownership of oil blocks at the time while allegedly allocating same to his kinsmen and their cronies like a bazaar.

He said, “One of the most salient issues that if not addressed will lead to more crisis is the issue of the oil blocks.

“President Buhari was a one-time Petroleum minister and Head of State in this country. Let us go and do an assessment of that time. The time when criminally they shared our oil blocks was under his watch either as Petroleum minister or as Head of State. It is in one of those times.

“Oil blocks were shared to one group. Look at it, either the person (owner of oil bloc) was a former military president or a relative of the military president or an in-law to a military president.”

Eradiri insisted that the allocation of the oil blocks did not follow due process as outlined by the government.

He called for a review of the oil blocks to redress injustice that such a manipulated process had brought against oil-producing communities of the Niger Delta.

“And that is one of the biggest issues that if not addressed, there will be more Niger Delta Avengers, you will see groups and groups that will spring up until the issue is addressed,” he warned.


Credit: Punch

Ijaw Youths Warn EFCC Against Alleged Plan To Arrest Jonathan

As the four-day burial programme for the late former governor of Bayelsa State, Chief Diepreye Alamieyeseigha, ended yesterday with a thanksgiving service in Ammasoma, the Ijaw Youths Council (IYC) cautioned against an alleged plot by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to arrest former President Goodluck Jonathan.

The umbrella body of Ijaw youths worldwide urged President Muhammadu Buhari and the anti-graft agency to shelve any such plan to persecute the former president, insisting that such a move would spell doom for the country and the government.

At a press conference to mark the end of the burial programme , the IYC President, Mr. Udengs Eradiri, said almost everybody that had close relationship with the former president had been arrested by the EFCC.

The IYC president particularly condemned the recent arrest and detention of Jonathan’s cousin, Mr. Robert Azibola , a contractor over an alleged $40million financial fraud.

Eradiri said Ijaw youths would not allow Azibola, Jonathan or any rising Ijaw leader to be persecuted by the EFCC the way the Federal Government dealt with the late Alamieyeseigha.

He said: “They have arrested almost all our people. Azibola was arrested by the EFCC and we are calling on the EFCC to stop persecuting him further and charge him to court if there are issues.
“They detained him for a long time forcing him to make statements to indict former President Jonathan. Azibola was a businessman, contractor and has the right like every Nigerian to get contracts. Why will the Niger Delta case be a different one?”

He added: “We noticed that the same way they persecuted Alamieyeseigha has continued. After Goodluck Jonathan, our people who contributed in that administration are being persecuted by this government.

“The recent one is the ploy to arrest Goodluck Jonathan which is unfolding everyday. This must stop. President Goodluck Jonathan is the most performing president that Nigeria has ever had. We are proud of him. Everyday there is a calculated attempt to whittle down the achievements of President Jonathan. We call on Nigerians to mount pressure on the government to focus on leading Nigeria aright rather than looking for ways to bring down the achievements of Jonathan.
“Buhari should please focus on governance rather than persecution of people who have added value. We are not happy about it and today we use Alamieyeseigha’s death as a point of contact. The world has seen that from Alamieyeseigha it has trickled down to all the Niger Delta people.”

Credit: ngrguardian

Group Appeals To FG Over Arrest, Harassment Of Ijaw Youths

 Iwere Peace Movement, a socio-cultural organization in the Niger Delta, has appealed to the Federal Government to halt the continued arrest and harassment of Ijaw youths in the Niger Delta, particularly in Warri. It argued that the action is creating tension in the region.

Also the Warri Ijaw Peace Monitoring Group faulted the allegation that a former ex-militant leader was behind the bombing of the oil pipelines and abduction of journalists in the creeks last year. The group claimed there was a calculated attempt by some PDP members who defected to APC in the area to destroy the Ijaws.

However, the Iwere Peace Movement in a statement signed by Mr Merie Oritsejolomi and Johnbull Deghelli Omadeli, charged security agents to go after those behind the destruction of the oil pipelines and not innocent Ijaw youths being arrested and humiliated by security agents.

According to the statement, “we have observed with pains the arrest of several innocent Ijaw youths by security agencies since the destruction of some oil pipelines by unknown persons.

“In as much as we support the efforts of the military in going after the perpetrators, we appeal strongly that this incessant arrest of Ijaw youths under the guise of searching for the perpetrators of the pipeline destruction must stop.”

“We are all Nigerians and no Nigerian must be treated as an animal or a visitor in his own land. It is sad watching Ijaw youths being arrested on a daily basis living their families in pain because of issues they know nothing about. This is not the best way of resolving the current tension in the region rather it may escalate it because when people feel betrayed by a nation that is supposed to protect them they can seek alternative means to survive.

“So we are strongly appealing to the Federal Government to apply diplomacy because when you intimidate people, nobody will want to help you in the investigation. Ijaw youths must not be seen as the problem of this nation. Those behind the destruction of the pipelines should be apprehended while innocent Ijaw youths in detention should be allowed to re-join their families so as to douse the tension in the region” it stated.

The Iwere Peace Movement added that “with this allegation from the Itsekiri group,it is obvious that the Itsekiri former PDP member who defected to the APC and the Itsekiris of Ugborodo are the ones that carried out the bombing of the pipelines and accusing Tompolo just to divert attention. The tried woefully to exploit the recent issue between Tompolo and the EFCC to score cheap political point.”

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Ijaw Youths Applaud Jonathan For Relocating $500m Fabrication Site To Bayelsa

The Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) has applauded President Goodluck Jonathan for the relocation of the Egina Floating Production Storage and Offloading (FPSO) vessel to Agge in Bayelsa. The 500 million dollars project had earlier been slated for LADOL fabrication yard in Lagos.

But President Jonathan on May 15, directed that the oil and gas investment project be relocated from LADOL Free Trade Zone (FTZ) in Lagos to Agga in Bayelsa.

The directive also instructed industry operators to move oil and gas cargoes to only ports in Warri, Calabar and Onne nearer to where the projects were to be sited.

In a statement issued in Yenagoa on Sunday by Eric Omare, IYC Spokesman, said the directive made economic sense and was in tandem with the Nigerian Content Act, 2010. “The IYC and indeed the Niger Delta people back the directive of President Jonathan to move the fabrication of oil and gas materials to the Niger Delta where the eventual job is to be done.

“This is not only in line with the requirement of the local content law but it also makes so much economic sense.

“It is common knowledge that Lagos is highly congested and there is need to move some class of cargoes, especially oil and gas materials, to ports within the Niger Delta region where the oil facilities are located.

“We consider the opposition to the Presidential directive and the attendant media propaganda as an insult on Niger Delta people,” Omare stated.

Omare also noted that all the oil companies operating in the Niger Delta region had their head offices in Lagos to the detriment of the Niger Delta economy, even when existing laws stipulated they should be domiciled in the Niger Delta.

Credit: NAN

Ijaw Youths Embrace Buhari’s Leadership, Warn Against Violence

Udengs Eradiri, president of the Ijaw Youths Council (IYC), has called on all Ijaw youths to avoid violence as a fallout against Muhammadu Buhari’s victory in the recent general elections.

Eradiri also congratulated Buhari and said that he would have the support of all Ijaw youths, just as they supported the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan. The IYC President warned youths that part-taking in any acts of violence would be at their own risk.

He confirmed that his organisation would accept Buhari’s leadership, adding that the South-South region had had its chance but failed to use the opportunity to its advantage.

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