Pro­tect your 13%, stop de­stroy­ing pipe­lines, Ab­dul­salami tells mil­i­tants

Daily Trust - - NEWS - From Abubakar Haruna, Minna

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.”

Photo: Felix Onig­binde

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.

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