NDDC: CLO Condemns Protest by Ijaw Youth Council
The Civil Liberties Organisation (CLO), Akwa Ibom State Branch condemns the protest that took place yesterday, Thursday, 27th May, 2021, at the office of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.
The protest, which was allegedly carried out by some youth under the auspices of Ijaw Youth Council (IYC), demanded the sack of the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, amongst other demands.
The irate youth conducted themselves in an unruly manner, locking up the gate of the Uyo office of the NDDC and paralysing activities in the office for a whole day. Curiously, the irate youth operated in broad daylight unhindered.
CLO cannot but recall how, about a couple of weeks ago, a peaceful procession by Lawyers in Akwa Ibom State, including members of the CLO, under the auspices of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) on the continued closure of Courts in the State, was rudely blocked by policemen allegedly deployed on the instructions of the State government.
CLO recalls how the Governor’s Camp Commandant brought out a gun from a vehicle and threatened to shoot the Lawyers for carrying out a peaceful protest at Wellington Bassey Way, Uyo.
While the CLO is mindful of the fundamental right of Nigerians to protest peacefully, we advise the youth in the Niger Delta region to be circumspect in order to avoid being used by persons whose ulterior motive might be to settle scores and scuttle the development of the Niger Delta region.
CLO has studied the reasons given by the youth for the protest, as shown in their placards and banners, and we make bold to state that the protest was unnecessary and uncalled for.
The CLO supports the ongoing forensic audit of the Niger Delta Development Commission, which was ordered by President Muhammadu Buhari, and urge that the exercise be prudently and transparently done in order to reposition the Commission to deliver on its core mandate.
The CLO calls on all the people of the Niger Delta region to support the forensic audit of the interventionist agency so that at the end of the exercise, the Commission will deliver on its mandate, remain accountable to the people, complete the litany of abandoned projects scattered across the Niger Delta region, and render people-oriented services in the region.
Otuekong Franklyn Isong
Comrade (Barr.) Christopher Ekpo
Comrade (Barr.) Godknows Njoku
Treasurer & Chairman, Inter-Governmental Relations
Dated; Friday, 28th May, 2021.