Militancy driving investors away, says Semenitari, NDDC boss

Ibim Semenitari

Ibim Semenitari

The Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, yesterday urged Ijaw leaders to intervene in stemming the rising tide of violence as investors are leaving the region.

Acting Managing Director of the commission, Ibim Semenitari told Ijaw National Congress (INC) delegation led by the group’s national president, Mr. Boma Obouforibo, which visited her yesterday at the NDCC headquarters in Port Harcourt, that the resurgence of militancy was not in the best interest of the Niger Delta.

“It is in our own interest. We are not talking about the benefits that accrue to us as a country but the benefits that accrue to us as people from the region. Even the commission can only thrive if we are able to provide oil because our funding as a commission comes from derivation. So, it is only to the extent to which oil is being sold that the NDDC can continue to operate,” she appealed to the warring militants.

According to Semenitari, businesses are disappearing from the Niger Delta in droves because nobody wants to do business in a hostile environment. It is not just that the environment is volatile, but it is also hostile. And so as leaders and opinion moulders in the region, we must wake up; we must begin to talk to our children because until we do so, all of us will suffer phenomenal losses,” she said.

Also, outgoing Deputy Consul-General of the
United States in Lagos, Ms. Dehab Ghebreab yesterday advised
Niger-Delta youths to desist from violence.
Ghebreab told newsmen in Lagos that they need to know that violence or militancy does not only affect people
living in their region, but may also affect other countries. They should know that foreign companies are also doing businesses in Nigeria
and that some may just want to come to Nigeria, but would only be ready to invest
in places where their businesses would be safe.”

In a similar vein, Senator Francis Spanner Okpozo of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) during the aborted Third Republic said though he is in not support of violence, but insisted that the grievances of the militants should not be wished away.

Okpozo however, counseled the militants that other ethnic nationalities in the South South region be not left out in the negotiations. “All genuine leaders and elders of the region must be consulted and carried along for genuine peace.”

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Ibim SemenitariNDDC
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