Foremost Ijaw Youths Council, IYC has reacted to President Muhammadu Buhari independence anniversary broadcast which the group says was more of a threat of violence to the people he has sworn to protect.
IYC reactions was contained in a statement signed by its President, Pereotubo Oweilaemi, Esq on Tuesday.
The statement said that Buhari’s threat to combat militants in the Niger Delta as contained in his broadcast, was just a ploy to launch offensive against defenseless creek communities of the Niger Delta as there is no trace of militancy in the region.
IYC said that the President is just beating the drum of war for nothing, stressing, “there is no militants’ activities in the Niger Delta.
The Niger Delta group insisted that the issue of militancy has since been resolved in 2016 when leaders of the region represented the agitators to broker peace with the Federal Government.
According to the group, “Based on the assurance of the Federal Government to address some of the demands of the region, especially the issues of modular refinery, relocation of oil companies head offices to the region and massive infrastructural developments, the militants have since given peace a chance to allow the Government fulfills its bargain.
IYC said that the Niger Delta people only expected President Buhari to tell the world the progress report of its promises to the region but instead of addressing the identified issues, “our President is threatening to unleash mayhem on our peaceful communities. That is a war of aggression against Nigerians. What is our offence for this new threat of violence?, they queried.
Besides, IYC said that if given administrative control of the NDDC to the Ministry of Niger Delta from the office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation is for it effective management as Mr President has said then we have no problem, maintaining that NDDC is swimming on a cesspool of corruption for which the Commission needs proper monitoring.
The IYC said that what Nigerians are asking for from President Buhari is positive leadership and not iron cast governance as being experience now.
“Nigerians don’t need iron cast governance. This Country has never been more divided than now. We need a President that will play fatherly role to all and sundry”, IYC said.
According to the Ijaw youths group, Mr. President’s speech was a declaration of war against Nigerians, stressing that the issue of dealing with hate speech though is commendable under a democratic setting, the Government should not take action in flagrant violation of the nation’s laws.
“Given a blanket order to the security agencies to deal with hate speech in the social media will reduce Nigeria to a police state where the rule of force takes the place of rule of law.
“Every law enforcement process should be dictated by the Constitution. The judiciary should also be given an unfettered hand to operate. That is only when such an order should be passed.
“On the charge that Nigerians should deviate from lawless habitats. Our position is that Nigerians would have appreciated his advice better if Mr. President directed his speech to the overbearing security agencies who are abusing their privileged positions with impunity.
“The most lawless set of people in our country are the security agencies, especially the DSS and the police. These people use crude methods to enforce the nation’s laws which are not known in our jurisprudence.
IYC queries, how can the ordinary man obey the law when the man who is to enforce it is flouting the law with levity?
On the transfer of NSIP from the Vice President’s office to the Ministry for Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, IYC said they would have no problem with the decision of Mr. President if the gesture is to achieve optimum management.
“Otherwise, we would raise eyebrow that the Government is emasculating the Vice President for obvious reasons”, the statement concluded.