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Niger Delta

Accept Dialogue, Ukori, Gbenekama Plead With Avengers

avengers, MEND; NDGJM
Posted: Jul 4, 2016 at 6:05 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

John Dugbe


Ughelli – Comrade Jude Ebitimi Ukori and Chief Godspower Gbenekama, two prominent leaders of Egbema and Gbaramatu Kingdoms, respectively, on Sunday, pleaded with members of the Niger Delta Avengers (NDA) to accept the olive branch the Federal Government extended to them and dialogue.

The duo made the appeal against the backdrop of the bombing of Chevron Nigeria Limited wells at Abiteye and NPDC pipelines near Warri by the NDA on Sunday morning in apparent rejection of the request of the Federal Government negotiation committee to negotiate.

The leaders who made this known in separate interview with Independent stated that if the NDA is not fighting a selfish war then they should accept the request for dialogue by the Federal Government, saying that no one can achieve the succession of a new republic with continuous bombings of oil facilities.

Comrade Jude Ebitimi Ukori, Secretary of Egbema and Gbaramatu Communities Development Foundation (EGCDF), said, “If members of the Niger Delta Avengers have genuine reasons for agitation why would they not go for dialogue with the Federal Government? It is what we have been craving. For the Federal Government to assure us that they were really ready for dialogue they withdrew all their troops. So it is expected that members of the NDA should go and dialogue if they have genuine issues.”

Ukori pointed out that if they do not have criminal intentions as they portray in their bombings, they should go and dialogue with the Federal Government. There is no crisis that would not end up in a roundtable. Now that the Federal Government, out of its magnanimity, says it wants negotiation, the NDA should accept it and send their representatives.

“If they have genuine reasons for bombings, they dialogue with the Federal Government; if they say they don’t want to go for dialogue, then their intention is criminal and not in the interest of the Niger Delta; continuous bombing is not in our interest,” he stated.

On his part, Chief Godspower Gbenekama, Acting Secretary Gbaramatu Traditional Council, said, “As a leader, I am for peace because if we don’t accept dialogue and we say bombing must continue then we will gain nothing. The Niger Delta Avengers should accept dialogue because when there is crisis of this magnitude, fifth columnists would come in to use the opportunity to do their damage and claim responsibility.”

He noted that there was never a time that the people of Gbaramatu kingdom came together to say, “Let us continue to bomb oil facilities; there may be misgivings in the Niger Delta but it will not make us to go and bomb oil facilities,” he stated.

He advised members of the NDA to accept to dialogue with the Federal Government, as it is only through dialogue that they can achieve their aim.

“If they know they are fighting for the betterment of the Niger Delta then they should dialogue. Bombing of oil facilities is not needed because it destroys the economy. Chevron is the only oil servicing company in Gbaramatu. If anyone destroys their facilities, he is also destroying the economy of the Gbaramatu people. However, that is not enough to say that we are very happy over the treatment meted on the people by the Federal Government,” he added.