By; JACOB ONJEWU DICKSON
A group under the auspices of the Warri Ijaw Peace Monitoring Group (WIPMG) on Monday January 29 appealed to agitating groups in the oil rich Niger Delta Region to Stop the Destruction of Crude oil Facilities for the development of the Nation with a view not to give the military the chance to kill innocent citizens as well as line their pockets with money that would have ordinarily been used to develop the region.
WIPMG Chairman, Chief Patrick Bigha made the appeal in a statement signed and made available to newsmen
WIPMG said the agitators should explore non-violent means to engage governments at all levels and International Oil Companies (IOCs) rather than resorting to the destruction of crude oil facilities in the region to avoid military actions in the communities and the harassment of perceived enemies of the present Federal Government of Nigeria.
WIPMG stated that the call became imperative stressing that it has observed that the Nigerian Military is very swift at harassing innocent villagers in the region, particularly communities along the oil rich Warri-Escravos area.
“We have noticed that the military and other security agencies have started plans to go after some persons who they perceived as enemies of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration.”
“It is worthy of note that this method of the military has never helped the people in the region as it has further worsened the precarious socio-economic situation of the people.”
WIPMG states that a peaceful resolution of the problems in the Niger Delta region, which successive governments including the present one has acknowledged, will usher in massive development into the region.
“The truth of the matter is that so much money has been expended on military actions in the region without achieving the desired peace.”
“It has become a stock in trade of the Nigerian Military to employ violence in dealing with the Niger Delta situation because they are gaining so much from such crude methods of resolving crisis in the region over the years.”
“We are aware of many military men that have made so much money from the problems in the region without addressing the main issues that brought about the problems in the first place.”
The group expressed happiness over the prevailing peace in the Warri-Escravos route as it sincerely appealed to agitating groups in the region to embrace peaceful means to press on their demands for the development of the region.