Bayelsa State Governor, Douye Diri, has said the recent passage of the Petroleum Industry Acts (PIA), by President Muhammadu Buhari, is a recipe for anarchy in the country.
Diri claims the passage is yet another step taken to subordinate oil-producing states, making it more like a subordinate and superordinate relationship.
The governor noted that there’s a missing gap in the relationship of the state, the Niger Delta region and the government at the centre.
Diri made the remark on Friday evening during the Independence Anniversary Dinner celebration at the DSP Alamieaeigha banquet hall, Yenagoa, the state capital.
“There’s a missing gap in the relationship of our dear state, the region and the federal government. The point is that even as Christians we worship God on Sundays, while the Moslems on Fridays, yet we still have sins therefore in the same vein we will not be tired of talking about justice and freedom for the state and the Niger Delta region.
”May I appeal to those who are aggrieved to stop the bloodletting across the country, just recently we lost very meaningful Nigerians in Anambra State; that is an ill wind that will not our state good. Let us look for dialogue to resolve our differences, we know it is painful when people shove aside dialogue.
“I have always reminded people that for those who make peaceful change impossible, violent change becomes inevitable. Let us not tread the route and road of violent change, this country is blessed and I believe the founding fathers have seen the greatness and not the misery of Nigeria.”
On the issue of diminishing oil, he said there is a forecast that soon nobody will trade on oil, therefore while the oil lasts, just 13 percent is given to host communities and 87 percent taken by the federal government, the people must continue to talk about it.
He called for diversification into other areas of revenue generation not explored and appealed to leaders in the state to support his administration to succeed.
“I will remind us that we have to look into diversification so we can have more development. Let us also play politics according to the rules, and not politics of thumb. I believe if we play according to rules, we will transit from one developing government to another development-oriented government because ultimate power belongs to the people. Let us build strong institutions instead of strong humans, so our institutions can outlive us.
”This is the time we Bayelsans need to exhibit that spirit of oneness and unity shown during the creation of the state.”
Exonerate Ken Saro-Wiwa, Not Pardons, Foundation Replies Buhari
The Ken Saro-Wiwa Foundation has said it wants exoneration and not pardonn to be granted to the late environmental activist, Ken Saro-Wiwa and eight others executed by the Nigerian military dictator, Sani Abacha.
The Foundation was reacting to a statement attributed to President Muhammadu Buhari saying he was considering granting a state pardon to Saro-Wiwa and others executed at the height of the Ogoni crisis in the 1990s.
A statement signed by Dr Owens Wiwa, brother of Ken Saro-Wiwa, on behalf of the Board of Directors of the Foundation and obtained by SaharaReporters on Sunday, however, said the late activist and the eight others who were murdered by the Abacha regime were not criminals.
The group, which became known as Ogoni 9, were activists from the Ogoni region who opposed the operating practices of oil companies destroying their area.
They were author and playwright Ken Saro-Wiwa, Saturday Dobee, Nordu Eawo, Daniel Gbooko, Paul Levera, Felix Nuate, Baribor Bera, Barinem Kiobel, and John Kpuine.
They were tried by a special military tribunal for allegedly masterminding the murder of Ogoni chiefs at a pro-government meeting, and hanged in 1995 by the military dictatorship of General Abacha.
The statement titled, ‘Exoneration Not Pardon For Ken Saro-Wiwa,’ reads: “The Board of Directors of the Ken Saro-Wiwa Foundation (KSWF) have received and read the statement from Mr (Femi) Adesina, the Special Adviser on Communications to the President of Nigeria, General Muhammadu Buhari (Rtd), in which the President conveyed his willingness to grant clemency or pardons to Ken Saro-Wiwa and eight Ogoni activists illegally executed by the Nigerian Military Dictatorship of Sani Abacha on November 10, 1995, after a sham trial.
“Ken Saro-Wiwa and the other Eight Ogonis were not criminals. They were innocent activists unjustly murdered for fighting for a just cause on behalf of their oppressed community. The path to true peace in the region begins with justice. The cleaning up of the environment for which they campaigned and died for is a first good step.
“The exoneration of Ken Saro-Wiwa and 8 other Ogoni activists, judicially murdered on November 10 1995 is another step towards peace.
“The family of Ken Saro-Wiwa have made a request for the exoneration of Ken Saro-Wiwa to the President in the past and are still waiting for a response. We urge the President to again consider this request as a path to justice and peace.”
The statement added that the “family and the Foundation have not asked any individual to ask for pardon or clemency for Ken Saro-Wiwa on our behalf, nor are we aware of any group of Ogonis making such a request”.
Drama As Ortom Busts Illegal Revenue Checkpoint In Benue, Arrests Operators [PHOTOS]
Luck ran out on a gang of illegal checkpoint operators at Abinsi, Guma Local Government Area of Benue State on Sunday, October 24, 2021, when Governor Samuel Ortom busted their operations.
Governor Ortom’s attention was drawn to the activities of the illegal revenue operators when he noticed the harassment of heavy-duty vehicles that were detained at the checkpoint on his way from Kwande Local Government.
He then ordered his convoy to stop to find out why many vehicles were parked at the checkpoint.
As soon as he alighted from his car, some of the youths at the checkpoint took to their heels.
He discovered, during an interaction with drivers of the vehicles, that the checkpoint operators were collecting money from motorists without issuing them receipts, a development that prompted the Governor to order the arrest of four of the operators who could not run.
The Governor directed that those who fled should also be apprehended and thoroughly investigated alongside the four suspects to unravel benefactors of the proceeds from their illegal collections.
He explained that within a very short time, the checkpoint operators collected more than N20,000 from the commuters without issuing them receipts.
Governor Ortom lamented that despite the collections, nothing goes to the government as such monies are diverted into private pockets for individual use.
DAILY POST reports that he vowed to sanction the management of the Board of Internal Revenue Service, BIRS, for failure to supervise and ensure the right thing was done.
Governor Ortom said he will henceforth, personally carry out surprise checks on the activities of checkpoint operators in the state.
The four suspects were then handed over to the Police for further investigation.
EFCC Grills Ex-Senate President
A former Senate President, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim, is currently being grilled by operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, in a case of corruption and diversion of public funds.
Anyim who arrived the headquarters of the anti-graft agency in Jabi, Abuja at about 3pm, is currently being grilled by a team of operatives.
Though details of the specific allegations against the former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, were sketchy as of press time, a source familiar with the case informed that, it is tied to the corruption and money laundering case involving former Aviation Minister and serving senator, Senator Stella Oduah.
Part of the rehabilitation funds to the tune of N780 million were allegedly traced to a company in which Senator Anyim has interest.
When contacted, Wilson Uwujaren, EFCC spokesman said he has not been briefed.
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