The leadership of the umbrella body of the Ijaw Youth Worldwide, Ijaw Youths Council (IYC) has described the fruitful interaction between the Presidential Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar and Ijaw Youths during the Monday Presidential Rally as a good sign of commitment to the growth and advancement of the people of the Niger Delta region.

According to the IYC, the interaction secured series of promises from Atiku if elected President in 2023 including the true restructuring of the country, equity, justice and the immediate upgrade of the management status of the Federal Government intervention agencies in the region from Interim to substative including that of the Presidential Amnesty Programme and the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).

The National Spokesman of the Ijaw Youth Council, Comrade Ebilade Ekerefe, who made this known yesterday in Yenagoa following the last Monday presentation at the interactive session between the Presidential Candidate of the PDP and the leadership of the Ijaw Youth Council(IYC) and the Ijaw National Congress(INC), said one of the demands of the Ijaw people includes the relocation of the headquarters of the oil companies operating in the Niger Delta to their region, noting that it should be a major consideration for the former vice president upon assumption of office.

Ekerefe, who also took the PDP candidate and his entourage on the journey of woe which had befallen the region under the current APC administration of President Muhammadu Buhari, called on the PDP not to renege on its promise for true fiscal federalism, equity and justice for the Niger Delta region which will translate to the quick completion of major infrastructures, including the East/West road and other critical infrastructures that has been abandoned in the region by federal government.

Comrade Ebilade Ekerefe also pointed out that the Niger Delta people have taken a joint decision not to support any political party that does not support the restructuring of Nigeria because that is the only way the Niger Delta region will benefit and have it’s pride of place in the nation.


“We believe that equity will provide the region it’s fair share of the Nation’s wealth. No right thinking Niger Delta will support any political party that has brought hardship to the region. Our major challenge is the exploitation of our oil wealth without reparation to host communities who bear the brunt of the oil exploitation.”

“The Niger Delta region is grossly polluted by oil exploration activities. The life expectancy rate of our people is cut short as a result of gas flaring by multinational oil companies. Climate change is causing unprecedented perennial flooding and the people are living in abject poverty and penury. Sadly to say, when Bayelsa was faced with ravaged flooding, the APC led Federal Government did not show the desired empathy to our state. Atiku Abubakar showed the needed support with donations and scholarships to victims of the flood disaster. Who value us at the time of our needs, we will value in return.”

“While the IYC and the INC will remain apolitical, we will not remain silence to negotiate a better deal in the interest of our region. Historical facts showed that the region faired better under the PDP. It is a fact that the NDDC, the Presidential Amnesty Programme, the Niger Delta Affairs Ministry and the NDCMB were conceived under the PDP. Even the position of Vice President and President of the Nation were provided for the region under the PDP. “

“Under the APC, all we got were tales of woes and empty promises, particularly the empty Presidential directive ordering the IOCs to relocate to the Niger Delta region. Instead of substantive heads for Federal Government Intervention agencies, all we had were interim and ineffective managements. If you compare and contrast, it is clear which party is best suitable for the region.”

Ebilade also commended the Bayelsa State Governor and the Governor General of the Ijaw nation, Sen. Douye Diri for his foresightedness and commitment to the Ijaw nation by ensuring such an important meeting is conducted at the Ijaw house, the headquarters of the Jerusalem of the Ijaw nation and it will go down in history.

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