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Former Niger Delta agitators have threatened to make the region ungovernable until the provision in the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) for oil-bearing communities is reviewed upward from the current three percent equity.
Africa Daily News, New York reports that the ex-militants under the aegis of Urhobo-Isoko Youth Wing and ex-agitator leaders of phase I, II, III of the Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP), bemoaned the Minister of State for Petroleum, Timipre Sylva, and Niger Delta senators for the deprivation of the region in the Act.
According to him, the minister and senators from the region backed President Muhammadu Buhari in hurriedly signing the bill into law for their selfish interests.
Chairman of Urhobo-Isoko Ex-militants Phase I, II, III, Joseph Figbele, and his deputy, Solomon Adu who spoke on behalf of the group, claimed the ‘I don’t care attitude’ of both Sylva and senators from the region was responsible for the three percent allocated for oil-bearing communities.
The group described the allocation of three per cent as not only an affront but also a total disregard to the plights and agitations of people of the region over the years.
They vowed that the region would not know peace if the review was not done. They said host communities had suffered several degradation over the decades of oil exploration by oil companies and that the PIB was geared to address this injustice.
The group said if the bill is sent back to the National Assembly for upward review, it will give some level of developmental leverage to host communities without agitation.
According to them, the region can no longer be short-changed, intimidated, and oppressed.
AFRICA DAILY NEWS, NEW YORK