Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege has appealed to members of the Reformed Niger Delta Avengers (RNDA) to halt its planned attacks on oil facilities in the region.
According to him, going ahead with their threat would create economic setback for the country and additional environmental degradation in the area.
Senator Omo-Agege’s appeal came on the heels of the recent threats by a coalition of nine militant groups in the Niger-Delta region, expressing readiness to resume hostilities by attacking oil and gas facilities if Federal Government did not meet the demands of End SARS protesters across the country.
After an emergency meeting in Delta State last week, the militant groups under the aegis of the RNDA, also announced their preparedness to disavow the ceasefire accord with the Federal Government and engage military forces.
Specifically, they threatened to resume attacks on some identified oil facilities in the region if nothing was done to redress the issues of poor welfare, armed oppression and inequality in the standard of living between the citizens and the political elites.
But speaking when he hosted a delegation of Oil and Gas Host Communities of Nigeria (HOSCON) in Abuja, led by elder statesman, Chief (Dr ) Wellington Okrika, the Delta Central lawmaker urged the agitators to sheathe their swords and allow peace to reign.
He assured that their demands would be tabled before the Presidency.
The senator stressed that with the nation still battling with the challenges posed by COVID-19 and the aftermath of End SARS protests which was hijacked by hoodlums, it cannot afford another militancy problem at the moment.
“Whatever it is, we must maintain peace in the Niger Delta. I say this in view of the new agitations by the Reformed Niger Delta Avengers.
“We are just coming out of the End SARS protest which, of course, we all witnessed how a peaceful protest was hijacked by those with sinister agenda.
“We are all witnesses to what happened afterwards even when we must acknowledge that in a democracy, protest is a right provided those that do it do so peacefully without abridging the rights of others,”
Speaking further, he urged HOSCON members to “go back to our people in the creeks and tell them we are here for them. We are here to champion their requests. We don’t want the peace of the Niger Delta to be disturbed or disrupted. We are here to protect the interest of our people. Yes, I may be the Deputy President of the Senate today but, I am first of all, a Senator representing my people. I am here and I am your own. I am your eye. We shall not disappoint you.
“Take this commendation to our brothers in the creeks that they have done well in keeping the peace and we will table their requests before the authorities as they have channelled that request through me. We shall ensure the right things are done”.