Former Niger Delta agitators under the aegis of Ex-Agitators Forum, have described as mischievous, a publication in the media by some persons it described as impostors, who are threatening to disrupt activities of the Management Committee of the Niger Delta Development Commission NDDC.
The Ex-Agitators Forum also vehemently condemned calls for the removal of the present Management Committee of the NDDC.
Describing themselves as genuine leaders of all ex-agitators, the group said it finds it absurd that, “a group of impostors will be issuing threats to cause disaffection among the people of the Niger Delta region.”
In a statement by HRH Henry Binidodogha (President First Phase), Olotu Wanemi (National Chairman Second Phase) and Tonye Bobo (National Chairman Third Phase), as made available to TNN, the ex-agitators expressed satisfaction with the performance of the Dr. Samuel Ogbuku-led management of the NDDC.
It further distanced itself from anyone or group holding contrary views and cautioned such persons and their supposed sponsors to desist from what they described as their mischievous antics, adding that they were unwittingly pulling the Niger Delta region backwards.
The statement read in part: “As major stakeholders in the region, we are worried by the frequent changes of leadership in the foremost interventionist agency in Nigeria’s oil-rich region. This disruptive change of guards impedes the development of the region.
“We are aware that some powerful individuals who previously benefited from the years of sleaze are behind the new threats. Their unfortunate mission, which is against the mandate of the NDDC, is meant to truncate the changes that are taking place at the Commission.
“We urge Niger Delta stakeholders to disregard those seeking to disrupt the system because it is obvious that they are sponsored to sow the seeds of discord in the hope of benefitting from the chaos that will follow. The stakeholders should note that the self-serving agents of disharmony are merely heating up the system knowing that President Bola Tinubu is in the process of reconstituting the NDDC Board.”
Insisting that the threat to shut down the operations of the NDDC was no longer fashionable, the group continued that, “as genuine stakeholders in the Niger Delta region, we have since embraced peaceful engagement since the emergence of the Ogbuku-led management team.
“It is noteworthy that within a very short period of the time, Dr Ogbuku and his team have laid the foundation for the rapid economic development of the region and put in place an enduring and sustainable governance structure for the effective operations of the Commission.
“We note that as a former youth leader himself, Dr Samuel Ogbuku has been through the mill and is well prepared for the leadership position he is occupying today. The leadership of the authentic ex-agitators is happy that Mr. President retained Dr. Ogbuku to continue to pilot affairs of the commission until a new board is constituted.
“Majority of genuine ex-agitators, who were in the thick of the struggle to emancipate the Niger Delta region, know their own. It is, therefore, unthinkable for fellow ex-agitators to call for the sack of the management currently headed by Dr Samuel Ogbuku, who is dearly loved by his people.
“We appeal to Niger Delta stakeholders to refrain from destabilizing the development vehicle that is being strengthened to provide for the welfare of our people.”