From Lateef Taiwo
The National Executive Committee Of PAN Niger- Delta Forum ( PANDEF) has called on President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to as a matter of urgency address the alleged omission Of Niger-Delta Ministry from ministerial, warning that the issue might portend crisis if not addressed
The meeting was chaired by the National Leader, Chief Dr. Edwin. K. Clark, OFR, CON, and in attendance were the National Chairman, Senator Emmanuel Ibok Essien, FNSE, Members of the Board of Trustees, as well as National and State Officers on Friday in Abuja
The meeting discussed issues pertaining to the ongoing appointment and assignment of Ministers, as it affects the states of the Niger Delta region and South-South Geo-Political Zone, particularly, the omission of the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs.
The meeting resolves as follows:
Expresses great surprise that in the published assignment of Ministers to their various cabinet portfolios, there is none designated for the existing Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs.
Reminds Mr. President that the Ministry of Niger Delta was created, specifically, to “focus on infrastructural development, environmental protection and empowerment of youths in the oil-rich Niger Delta region”, which continues to be greatly impacted by the oil and gas industry, and remains the live-wire of the national economy.
That the Ministry which was created by President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua in 2008, and was sustained under his two immediate predecessors (Goodluck Jonathan and Muhammadu Buhari) to help advance the course of the peace in the Niger Delta region.
PANDEF THEREFORE, CALLED ON MR. PRESIDENT TO URGENTLY ADDRESS THE OMISSION while It Cautioned that any misguided step toward SCRAPPING OR SUBMERGING the Ministry, will create an unfavorable environment with adverse consequences.
PANDEF Further cautioned the federal government to desist from tampering with any institution(s), which along with the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs, have been flagship institution(s), to ensure peace and development in the Niger Delta region.
Part of the statement reads:”We are hopeful that the federal government will be properly advised on this matter, even as we reiterate the commitment of the leadership of PANDEF and the people of the region to enduring the reign of peace and stability in the overall interest of country”