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Tuesday, 10 January 2017 17:19

Malabu oil probe is designed to witch-hunt Niger Delta –IYC Featured

Written by Chris Deinkoru,Yenagoa
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IYC President, Udengs Eradiri IYC President, Udengs Eradiri Credits: File copy

Ongoing investigations into the Malabu oil deals by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, are part of alleged targeted persecution of Ijaw people and
the Niger Delta by the present administration, the Ijaw Youth Council, IYC, has claimed. The all-Ijaw youth body has therefore described it as “unacceptable”.

IYC, which specifically condemned the singling out of the Malabu oil deal for probe, said it is disheartening that while other oil blocks awarded the same time and through the same process were left untouched, the Malabu oil deal has been subjected to sustained probe because it is owned by a Niger Deltan. The group cautioned the Federal Government and foreign countries involved in the probe to hands-off “for the sake of peace in the region.”

IYC President, Udengs Eradiri, who spoke to journalists in Yenagoa at the IYC Secretariat, said, “Malabu probe is designed to witch hunt the Niger Delta people. The Federal Government
should hands off the Malabu issue because you cannot be probing Malabu and others are enjoying the same process.”

According to Eradiri, “This is a country where oil blocks were awarded to and allocated to cronies yet nobody is saying anything about them but Malabu because it is owned by a Niger Deltan and Ijaw man.  If they want to investigate Malabu, they should investigate every other person that has been awarded oil blocks in this country. They awarded it to their friends, cronies and their brothers.

The IYC President continued, “OPL 244, OPL245 and OPL 246 which were awarded the same day through the same process owned by Danjuma were awarded the same day. Other OML, uncountable, were awarded to people from the North. They are enjoying their largesse but everyday Malabu is subjected to probe.

“Meanwhile the same process for the Malabu was the same process for others but because Malabu is owned by a Niger delta. The signature bonus in this country is $20million but Malabu paid $210 million as Signature Bonus and yet nobody is talking but we, the Niger Delta people, will not be quiet.

“This is how they brought down All States Trust Bank, Oceanic Bank,Diezani Allison, and Jonathan administration, dragging him in the mud every day. This is how this administration sacked Ijaw people in the NNPC. The federal government and the foreign countries should hands off Malabo.”

The IYC President, who also carpeted the federal government over continued delay in negotiation with the Niger Delta leaders in the ongoing oil crisis in the region, stressed that the action of the federal government is an indication that the present administration was not ready to bring peace and development to the region. Eradiri pointed out that military action will not work in the region.

“Look at the negotiation in the Niger Delta, everyday they are neither here nor there. We are not expecting President Muhammadu Buhari to solve all the Niger Delta problems but he should give us his plans on how he will ensure that oil flows in the region, because military action will not work.  IYC will continue to speak against the injustice in the Niger Delta,”
Eradiri stated.

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