By Fred Itua
Abuja – Niger Delta militants, yesterday, described the withdrawal of the quit notice issued to Igbo resident in the North by a coalition of northern youths as an attempt to hoodwink Nigerians.
The militants said it was also laughable to announce the withdrawal alongside a call to revoke the bail conditions of the leader of the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu.
The agitators rejected the withdrawal notice in its entirety. They also accused the Federal Government and northern governors of conniving with the Arewa youths in issuing the Igbo quit notice.
In a statement, the agitators maintained their earlier stance which demanded the departure of northerners and Yoruba from the Niger Delta region before October 1, 2017.
Those who signed the statement included General John Duku (Niger Delta Watchdogs and Convener, Coalition of Niger Delta Agitators); General Ekpo Ekpo (Niger Delta Volunteers); General Osarolor Nedam (Niger Delta Warriors); Major General Henry Okon Etete (Niger Delta Peoples Fighters); Major General Asukwo Henshaw (Bakassi Freedom Fighters); Major General Ibinabo Horsfall (Niger Delta Movement for Justice); Major General Duke Emmanson (Niger Delta Fighters Network); Major General Inibeghe Adams (Niger Delta Freedom Mandate) and Major General Ibinabo Tariah (Niger Delta Development Network).
They also insisted that oil blocs within the coastal area given to former president Olusegun Obasanjo, former vice president Atiku Abubakar, General T. Y. Danjuma and other personalities should be returned to them.
The militants reiterated their resolve to resume attacks on oil installations from September 10 and warned onshore and offshore workers to leave the area.
The statement reads in full: “The recent gathering of the Arewa Youths in Transcorp Hilton, Abuja to announce a suspension of the quit notice issued to the Igbo in the North is one action that glaringly shows that government and security heads from the North were the brains behind the earlier announcement. It is clear to all, that the political elite in the North and the security agencies headed by northerners were the ones that stoked the fire of the quit notice pronouncement.
“The phantom suspension announcement is like closing one door while opening another with the aim of achieving the same result; hence this façade announcement is unacceptable to us.
“It is laughable that the Arewa Youth group thinks it can fool the rest of Nigerians, particularly those of us in the Niger Delta part of the country, by replacing the quit notice with call for the arrest of Kanu. Today, the Federal Government has heeded the demand of Coalition of Northern Youth Groups by filing a motion in court to revoke Kanu’s bail.
“Consequent upon this, we, the Coalition of Niger Delta Agitators, reject the entire letters of the press conference held by the Coalition of Arewa Youths that purported to have suspended the quit notice, according to the northern groups, the suspension of the quit notice was based on series of meetings involving the Northerner Governor’s Forum, senators from the northern extraction, the DSS and the Presidency, it shows the complicity of the Nigerian government, northern elders and security chiefs of northern extraction in the planed intimidation of ethnic groups by the northern cabal, but we want to assure them that they have failed and they will continue to fail; we shall hold them responsible to account for the millions of naira they used to pacify the Arewa youths to withdraw their inconsequential quit notice.
“We want to warn all Nigerians especially the Niger Delta people to beware of their movement close to NNPC headquarters in Abuja and Lagos, oil companies headquarters outside Niger Delta region, government offices and northerners/Yoruba businesses/companies within the Niger Delta region from September 10, 2017.”