Noting that the Niger Delta problem had been left to fester for too long,
Onosode who chaired the Niger Delta Environmental Study (NDES) said all hope
was not lost. He spoke in Abuja at the presentation of two books to mark his
75th birthday, including a biography and his book on Environmental Issues in
the Niger Delta. The event was hosted by the National Universities
According to him, government needs to demonstrate a transparent commitment
for a change and take the issues serious instead of seeing it as yet another
political problem that needs to be fixed. “The point I made very clearly is
that we have all contributed to get where we are today, we must work
together to solve the problem,” he said.
However, the Niger-Delta Democratic Union (NDDU) has attacked the proposed
summit, saying it is unnecessary, diversionary, just as it also condemned
the Federal Government’s gunboat diplomatic response to the Niger-Delta
Rising from a one-day quarterly meeting of the people’s parliament held on
Sunday in Warri, Delta State, the union further viewed the proposed summit
as a jamboree that will yield no benefit to the people of the region.
In a communiqué signed by Mr. Akpo Mudiaga-Odje and Comrade Franklin Oseya,
convener and facilitator and secretary respectively, the union, however,
called on the federal government to immediately jettison the whole idea of a
summit and rather harmonize and implement previous reports and
recommendations on Niger-Delta such as the Henry Willink report of 1958, the
Popoola report, the Ogomudia report and the rest.
“The so-called Excess Crude oil Account should be abolished immediately. We
call on President Umar Yar’Adua to stop further illegal withdrawals from it
such as the five Billion Dollars withdrawn to fund the power sector as
approved by the National Economic Council (NEC),” the organization stressed.
“We consider it as a palpable fraud on the Niger-Delta, the unilateral and
illegal withdrawals from the so-called excess crude oil account without
passing through the crucible of legislative prescription as provided under
section 80(3) and (4) of the 1999 constitution,” said the union’s
The Warri based NDDU urged the National Assembly to expedite action on
passing the new Revenue formula bill into law as the current Act 106 of 1992
as amended which was last reviewed in 2002 is illegal and obsolete.
The union also called on all the governors in the region to judiciously
decentralize the recently shared proceeds from the excess crude fund to
their respective oil commissions, including their local government councils
and oil bearing communities for even grass root development and empowerment.