A coalition of Southern Nigeria Youth groups has thrown its weight behind the ongoing protest in demand for the inauguration of the Niger-Delta Development Commission, NDDC, Board.
There has been a sustained protest by Ijaw youths against the non-inauguration of the NDDC board.
Tension was added to the development with the abduction of the National President of Ijaw Youth Council, Com. Dcn. Timothy Peter Igbifa.
In a statement on Thursday signed by Aare Barr Oladotun Hassan, President, Coalition of Southern Groups/Global President, Yoruba Council of Youths Worldwide and Mazi Okwu Nnabuike,
Secretary General, Coalition of Southern Groups/President General, Ohaneze Ndigbo Youth Council Worldwide, they gave the Federal Government a 48-hour ultimatum to inaugurate the board.
While condemning Igbifa’s abduction, they blamed it on “unknown assailants working for the cabals and enemies of the Ijaw nation, whose sole mission is to continually undermine the formal inauguration of the substantive board of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) by Federal Government.
“It is line with this we call on President Muhammadu Buhari to call for the immediate investigation and arrest of the abductors of Comrade Igbifa and thier fellow cohorts.
“We, therefore, support the ongoing mass protests in the entire Niger Delta region and environs by the Igbifa led leadership, while alerting President Muhammadu Buhari to immediately inaugurate the NDDC Board within the next 48hours, or we resort to solidarity peaceful protests to all major oil companies’ headquarters domiciled in Lagos State and other parts of the Southern parts of the country to accede the IYC demands,” they stated.
They further stressed the need for the Federal Government, alongside all state governors to immediately engage the Nigerian youths in a National Security Dialogue Conversation, while eqaully using the medium to address other sundry issues of national importance, especially youth restiveness and unemployment, food security and economic growth, to mention a few.
“A National Youth Development Dialogue is hereby demanded to be hosted by Mr President himself alongside the Senate President and the Speaker, House of Representatives and Governors and Speakers of the 36 States of the Federation, in order to collectively proffer solutions to the issues at hand: corruption, terrorism and banditry, mass killings and kidnappings, farmer/herders crises to mention a few currently plaguing the nation.
“We appreciate the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi for his Maverick role and strong advocacy for the emancipation and total inclusion of the Nigerian youths in governance structures and discuss at all levels.
“We demand the onward implementation of our submitted memoranda on the ongoing 1999 constitutional review viz: on the establishment of the National Youth Development Commission, National Joint Regional Security Networks Agency for harmonization and evaluation of all local vigilante and traditional security groups, as well as decentralised State and Local Governments Policing strategy, National Education Right Laws, Legislatures, Judiciary and Local Governments Autonomy, National Plebiscite and Referendum Commission, and National Youth Right Laws, respectively.
“We commend the Southern Governors’ Forum’s efforts so far, but insist on a dialogue date with Mr President targeted at resolving all aforementioned resolutions with the Federal Government rather than the ongoing media feuds.”