The leadership of the apex Ijaw youth group, Ijaw Youths Council (IYC) Worldwide, has assured President Muhammad Buhari and the Defence Headquarters that the youths of the region have no plan to destabilize and disrupt the existing peace in the region.
The group through its National Spokesman, Ebilade Ekerefe, told BBNAIJA ONLINE” that though the position presented by the Ijaw youths after the signing of the PIB into law by President Muhammadu Buhari is expressive enough, it does not mean the region will be thrown into crisis and destabilization.
BBNAIJA ONLINE” gathered that the Defence headquarters, had in a statement signed by its Director of Defence Information, Major General Benjamin Sawyerr, threatened tough actions against alleged plans by Niger Delta youths to engage in fresh hostilities.
But the IYC spokesman, Ebilade Ekerefe, in a statement issued to BBNAIJA ONLINE” on Wednesday in Yenagoa, said though the Youths of the region are angered by the refusal of the present administration to listen to the calls of the region on various issues, it had no intentions of fomenting trouble.
“The defence headquarters should adopt a visionary status of advising the Buhari administration on these contentious issues that may lead to a breach of peace and security rather than been reactionary and issuing of threats.”
”The youths are not planning to engage in any protest march or engage in fresh hostilities to destabilize the existing peace in the region we’ve contributed so hard to sustain.
“For the information of the Defence headquarters, Ijaw Youths are more matured and disposed to robust intellectual engagements on issues. However, the Military authorities should understand that the Niger Delta youths would not allow the region to fall into the plot to destroy communities as they did in the past”
“Instead of outrightly encouraging continued dialogue between the region and President Buhari’s administration, the military is busy issuing statements of threats against a region that has kept faith with peace despite the insurmountable security challenges in the North-East, Benue and Kaduna states.”
Ekerefe said the IYC and other regional stakeholders are open to a town hall meeting with the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva over the provisions of the PIA.
“The only way out is for the youths to continue to demand town hall meetings with the Honorable Minister and explain why the agreed 10% was reduced to a meagre 3%. Our people deserve to know and until that process is initiated, we won’t go back on our earlier stand”.