Niger Delta Congress throws weight behind Peter Obi’s presidential ambition
…Lament Federal Government’s unjust treatment of Niger Delta region
ETHNIC nationalities of the Niger Delta, under the auspices of Niger Delta Congress (NDC), have called on all Niger Deltans and the rest of the country to shun partisan politics and stand for what is right, just and fair, by supporting and coming out to cast their votes for Mr Peter Obi, the Labour Party Presidential Candidate.
The group also lamented the protracted injustices Nigerians and Niger Deltans in particular have suffered on the hands of the Federal Government of Nigeria.
The group made this known on Thursday in a statement signed by Mudiaga Ogboru, its National Spokesperson, and made available to GbaramatuVoice.
While giving their support to Peter Obi, the group explained that it’ll be morally wrong for them as a non-partisan Organisation and movement to be silent in what is shaping up to be a decisive election which will make or mar this country’s future, noting that by being silent, they will lose the moral right to speak up against the injustices which their people have suffered and continue to suffer within the Nigerian Federation.
Read statement in full below:
“I want to on behalf of the NEC and members of the Niger Delta Congress begin offer my unreserved salutations to the millions of Niger Deltans from across the six South South states who have paid keen attention to the ongoing political contest with the hope that with their votes freely cast, there would emerge a president who will truly respond with the full capacity of his office to the legitimate socioeconomic and sociopolitical concerns of Niger Deltans as well as the various other peoples within this geopolitical space called Nigeria.
“For the past eight years under this tone deaf administration, the Niger Delta has experienced some of the worst sociopolitical and socioeconomic attacks; the Federal Government started off by auctioning over 80 oil wells belonging to our people with no regard to our calls for inclusion; the Federal Government using an Executive Order circumvented the fraudulent Nigerian Constitution to grant Northern Nigeria resource control and the freedom to harness its gold and other mineral resources while also depriving us of those same rights; the Federal Government bungled the flagship Ogoni cleanup which would’ve been a test case for the cleanup of the entire Niger Delta so bad that today the United Nations is threatening to pull out completely; the Federal Government passed a denigrating Petroleum Industry Bill which simply harmonizes all existing subjugative legislations governing resource exploitation and paying no heed to our concerns.
“It did not end there; the Federal Government set in motion numerous policies which cumulatively have today made our region the poorest region in the entire Southern Nigeria, the most food deprived in the entire country, the lowest life expectancy in the country, the highest out of school children in Southern Nigeria, and the most lacking in access to health facilities in Southern Nigeria. Comparing and contrasting with our contribution to this country, we have been paid evil for good and it is unacceptable to our people.
“As an organization which has as its ethos, justice, equity and fairness, we believe the forthcoming Presidential elections is coming at a crucial point in the history of the Nigerian Federation and gives us an opportunity to start again on a more just note. We believe that there can be no peace without justice, and that injustice to one should be injustice to all. This prevailing cloud of injustice has brought about an increase in despondency and a near hopelessness of the Nigerian masses, leading to a heightened call for justice from different sections of this country. These different calls for justice have manifested in different forms; calls for the restructuring of the Federation, and in extreme cases an outright call for secession of its constituent parts.
“In the process leading to the emergence of the different political party candidates, it is clear that justice, equity and fairness were set aside for expediency and selfish interests. If it were not for those, there wouldn’t be a Muslim-Muslim candidature paying no regard to the religious composition of this country, or the presentation of a Northern-Fulani candidature which completely disregards the ethnic composition and sensibilities of this country.
“It is on record that every section of this country has at one point or the other since the end of the Civil War in 1960 produced the Head of State or President, whether via the barrel of the gun, or the ballot; except for one region, the South East. As has been stated in previous paragraphs, injustice to one should be injustice to all, and there can be no peace without justice. We believe that it’ll be morally wrong for the NDC as a non-partisan Organisation and movement of our people to be silent in what is shaping up to be a decisive election which will make or mar this country’s future. We believe that by being silent, we also lose the moral right to speak up against the injustices which our people have suffered and continue to suffer within the Nigerian Federation.
“Bearing all these in mind, the NDC as a representative group of the ethnic nationalities of the Niger Delta, and cognizant of the wishes of our people, stand solidly behind the candidate of the Labour Party, Mr Peter Obi. We therefore use this medium to call on all Niger Deltans and the rest of the country to shun partisan politics and stand for what is right, just and fair, by also supporting and coming out enmass to cast their vote for Mr Peter Obi. We do not believe Mr Peter Obi will miraculously turn Nigeria around, but we believe him to be credible, of good character and devoid of the baggage of corruption plaguing other front runners. We have an opportunity to lay a new foundation, and we must do so on the altar of justice, equity, and fairness and heal festering wounds that have contributed to our continuous decline as a country.