Not comfortable with on-going campaigns by some northern groups that seem to be rallying support for Senator Godswill Akpabio to contest the presidential election in 2023, a youth group in the Niger Delta, the South South Youths Initiative has said the minister of Niger Delta Affairs will not have the support of Niger Delta people.
President of the group, Mr Saviour Oscar said in an interview in Port Harcourt that the minister had declared himself an enemy of the region by the way he handled issues concerning the NDDC and its governing board.
A northern group, the Akpabio for Common Good had recently urged Akpabio to present himself for election into the office of president in 2023, saying he had worked well enough and deserved the office.
Another northern group, the North Central Patriotic Democrats (NCPD), also said recently that they have endorsed Akpabio as its sole candidate in the build up to the 2023 presidential election.
But Oscar who reacted to the developments said the northern interests were only trying to grab the resources of the Niger Delta people which were currently under the control of the minister, having been the one in charge of the NDDC for years now.
Oscar said “Akpabio does not earn anything good in Niger Delta considering his latest zero achievement in Niger Delta as a minister in the ministry of Niger Delta. Akpabio has chosen himself to be an enemy of the Niger Delta people…the youth of the south south region region, Niger Delta and Nigeria at large does not see him as light in the region.”
He said it would be difficult for people in the north to impose a presidential candidate on the people of the Niger Delta, noting that with Akpabio’s records in the running of the NDDC, it would be difficult for his candidacy to fly in the south south. He also said the people urging him to contest for the highest seat in Nigeria were out to deceive him and collect his money.
“They can’t impose any candidate against our choice on us. The north is not considering Akpabio for president, it is his beneficiaries that are considering him due to his benevolent attitude towards them, with the Niger Delta resources.
“Akpabio has not made his intention to contest for president known to those of us in Niger Delta because he knows what our reactions will be. Besides, is it the north that will make a choice for us in the Niger Delta for who we are to consider to be our preferred candidate?
“Are we responsible for their own choice of candidates? Why do we keep seeing those people in the north to be the deciding factor of who is qualified to be the president of our country?
“We are not just rejecting him because of NDDC but because of his failure to restore hope in the Niger Delta with his position as the minister, ministry of Niger Delta affairs. We can’t record achievements. Why should we support such a person who has no love of developing his environment, using our resources to negotiate for his personal interest?
“The south south youth initiative under my leadership as the national president will not support any greedy mindset politician who aims at nothing but to use our God given resources to negotiate for personal interest, not minding the negative effect on his people.
“We are positive minded people that will support any positive mind that is willing to move the people of Niger Delta from this present condition to a better one. We have suffered so much in the Midst of plenty.”