Clark accuses security forces, government officials of causing tension in Niger Delta | Nigeria Newspaper- Nigeria News| Naija News

11.11.17

Clark accuses security forces, government officials of causing tension in Niger Delta

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Clark accuses security forces, government officials of causing tension in Niger Delta
The National Leader of the Pan Niger Delta Forum, PANDEF, Senator Edwin Clark, has accused Nigeria’s security forces and government officials of causing unnecessary tension in the Niger Delta region.
The elder statesman strongly frowned at the manner, with which the army allegedly terrorize the people, including women and children, with fighter jets and gunboats.
Citing the recent suspension of ceasefire and threat to resume hostilities by the Niger Delta Avengers, NDA, he said, “When the Niger Delta Avengers gave notice of withdrawing its ceasefire and resuming hostilities for obvious reasons, the leadership of PANDEF quickly intervened, appealing to them to maintain status quo. It went further to send emissaries to the creeks to deliberate with the NDA.”
“It is the ordinary people, including women and children who are the victims of this show of power by the military. For instance, the schoolchildren will be too scared to go to school; the fishermen and the petty traders will either hide in their rooms or run away from their homes for safety.
“One would have expected the Federal Government and the military to know that the Avengers have never showed any sign of retreat or fear when between February 2016 and August, 2016, the area was over militarized by Operation Crocodile Smile. These are people, who are ready to sacrifice their lives for what they believe in, which is remediation of the neglect of the region.”
Clark asserted, “It became clear that the second movement/deployment of Operation Crocodile Smile to the Niger Delta did not deter the NDA from repudiating ceasefire, which they had granted over a year ago. This should tell the Federal Government that the crisis in the Niger Delta is a cry for the development of the area; therefore, it will be very difficult, if not impossible to use the military force to cow the people to submission.”
“The wise thing for the Federal Government to do will be to sit down and dialogue with the people. What the Federal Government is doing right now is misapplication of resources. Can the Federal Government sit down and calculate how much it has cost it to deploy military to the Niger Delta area from 2002 to date?
“Can the Federal Government tell Nigerians what these figures are and has military action brought peace? But for the intervention of well meaning elders, let the Federal Government tell the Nigerian public what meaningful progress its actions has brought, outside pain and humiliation,” he said.
According to him, “It appears that the Federal Government has not learnt from history. If the only answer it has is to use the military to fight back the threats and attacks of the militants in the creeks, then it will not succeed, it will not work.”

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