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President Muhammadu Buhari who deliberately provoked the recent militancy in the Niger Delta, has earmarked the sun of N29 billion in the 2017 Budget to fight militants’ disturbances in the Niger Delta region, and gives credence by some Nigeria that he his announced proposed dialogue with leaders of the region is just a sham.
The leader of the Pan Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF), Chief Edwin Clark accused President Buhari’s government of deliberately frustrating proposed dialogue with leaders of the region, as his only agenda in Niger Delta is war than his announced diplomacy two months ago.
Dr. Alfred Mulade, a member of PANDEF Central Working Committee, in a statement on behalf of the group, according to Hope For Nigeria, expressed grave concerns that budgeting N29 billion to fight militancy when peace was gradually returning to the region to pave way for concrete dialogue with the people of the region, means that the President Muhammadu Buhari’s government was not interested in dialogue.
“To make matters worse, the government is reported to have earmarked a whooping N29Billion of oil revenue to fight Militancy in the Niger Delta region. This, of course, will further exacerbate the crises in the region, where PANDEF has been working assiduously to ensure permanent peace.
“How on earth would government begin to think this kind of huge expenditure following the dwindling economic conditions just to fight militancy, when the causative factors, sufficiently articulated and presented to Mr. President, by PANDEF, remain ignored?
“In the meeting with Mr. President, and at other responsible fora, PANDEF has consistently advocated for the need for dialogue, and the urgent setting up of a Dialogue Team by the Federal Government to demonstrate credible commitment in resolving the crisis in the region, for dialogue with PANDEF which bear clear mandate from all stakeholders and agitating groups in the region.”