Militants threaten to commence ‘Operation Deliver Akwa Ibom Campaign’

By David Owei

A group of Niger Delta agitators have asked multinational oil companies to pack out of Akwa Ibom State or risk being attacked as it will soon commence ‘Operation Deliver Akwa Ibom Campaign’.

The group, under the aegis of Coalition of Niger Delta Agitators, said its decision was based on dissatisfaction with the companies over their neglect of riverine communities in the state.

In a statement on Monday by self-styled General John Duku of the Niger Delta Watchdogs, the agitators said the level of injustice, neglect, marginalisation, and untold hardship the communities suffer under the multinational oil companies operating in the  state were no longer bearable.

They observed that despite being in the business of exploring and exploiting oil from these communities for over 30 years, the multinational oil companies had completely abandoned their corporate social responsibilities (CSR) in the areas of scholarships, employment, and empowerment for its host communities.

Part of the statement reads: “All these multinational oil and servicing companies do not have even a liaison office in the state.

“Ninety percent of their workforce is non-indigenes of the state, the remaining 10 percent they pick from Akwa Ibom are placed under contract with meagre payment and without any entitlement.

“It is also noted that none of these companies, even their representatives, deem it necessary to visit their host communities.

“This is a satanic act and we shall handle it the way and manner they would feel the same pain that communities have been passing through.

“Worst still is the fact that Oriental Energy Resources management believes and boasts that with the personal relationship of the Managing Director, Alhaji Muhammed Indimi, as an in-law to the President and Commander-in-Chief of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari, his company and assets are untouchable, thus he can do whatever he likes, citing the recent case between Oriental Energy and Afren Resources Nigeria Limited which was ruled in his favour.

“From our findings, we have discovered that the Community Affairs Department in all these multinational oil companies are in the business of conniving with traditional rulers, community leaders and some government officials to fraudulently steal, embezzle, and criminally defraud the core oil producing communities of monies meant for community development and every other benefits that should have accrued to the oil producing communities.

“We, therefore, call on the government to ensure the withdrawal of the certificates of these criminal traditional rulers.

“We shall immediately commence mobilisation of all the key actors in this struggle, including all the militant groups, to Akwa Ibom State in order to surmount these evil companies from the state.

“We shall ensure total shut down of all flow-stations, all the oil vessels would be attacked (this is ‘Operation Deliver Akwa Ibom Campaign’).