…Demands wholesome development of Niger Delta
The indigenous People of Niger Delta, IPND, has congratulated Presidential candidates of the various political parties for their victories at the sundry primaries held last week, tasking them to make a wholesome development of the Niger Delta region a top priority.
President General of the body, Tiemo Pumokumo in a statement made available to Vanguard on Wednesday, however added that the 13 per cent derivation currently being paid to oil producing states by the federal government would no longer be acceptable to the people of the oil-rich region given its peculiar challenges.
“We congratulate the winners of the just concluded primary elections in the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and other political parties.
“We however want to make it clear that the interest of the Niger Delta has not been protected by any of the political parties presently campaigning for the Presidential seat of this country. Considering the peculiar terrain and developmental challenges obvious in the Niger Delta region, 13% derivation is a mockery of our sensitivity and peanut compared to the decades of marginalization and exploitation,” the statement read in part.
The group stressed that going to the poll in 2019, the people of Niger Delta would only consider casting the ballot for a candidate committed to the peace, development and progress of the region.
He said, “The Niger Delta People will not give their support or votes to any candidate who cannot give a concrete plan and guarantee on improvement in the present formula, which has put our people and region into perpetual slavery, financial slavery and political slavery.
“We need candidates that will act in accordance with global environmental laws and make new laws were necessary to protect our environment.
“We demand sincere developmental initiatives that are visible and within the reach of the rural communities who are left to face the direct consequences of crude methods of Oil exploration being practiced by the Oil multinationals operating in the Niger Delta region.
“Any governor or political appointee who has decided to be a tool by which the resources and developmental funds are looted and siphoned to unknown destinations will be exposed and will have no hiding place in the Niger Delta,” adding that IPND will continue to push for true federalism “and better representation for Our people.”