Protect your 13%, stop destroying pipelines, Abdulsalami tells militants
Aformer head of state, General Abdulsalami Abubakar, has called on the Niger Delta Avengers to embrace dialogue, reminding the militants that the 13 per cent accruable to the region is affected by the destructive activities.
Abdulsalami made the remarks when he played host to a former governor of Abia State, Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu in Minna. He said: “I have said before that they should really put down their arms and let’s discuss. They are not doing anybody any good. In fact, they are hurting their area more than they think they are hurting Nigeria. It is their people that are most affected by the oil spill. Now, because of their recklessness, I will put it, we are almost grounded in terms of oil exploration. So, even the money that is being allocated to them in Niger Delta, that is the 13 per cent derivation, is no longer there. So, who is suffering?”
He called on the Avengers to give peace a chance to allow the country move forward. “Let us maintain peace, there must be peace before any country can move forward,” he said.
Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu who also spoke, called on President Muhammadu Buhari to negotiate with the Avengers and other agitating groups. He said, “Negotiation is the answer because whether you fight with infantry brigade, you must come back to the table and negotiate. We cannot use our army to solve all the problems. President Muhammadu Buhari needs to negotiate with the boys in the Niger Delta, the Avengers, and also negotiate with the boys calling for Biafra.
“Most of those boys were not born during the civil war. We need to educate them, though what they are saying is right because you have the right to say no, I don’t want to be here. The President needs to tell them why it is more meaningful to be in a bigger Nigeria, because the bigger the better. In fact, the President should annex, Benin Republic, Sao Tome, Equatorial Guinea and make them part of Nigeria.”
Ruqayyah Kabiru Yusuf (right) poses with Prof. Buba Bajoga after receiving the best student award during the Abuja Capital International College’s 10th graduation and awards day held in Abuja recently.