The Ijaw Youth Council, IYC, Worldwide has urged President Muhammadu Buhari and the National Assembly to, as a matter of national importance, initiate the amendment of the Constitution by allowing States to harness and control the resources in their domains.
While stressing that this is the only path to peace in Nigeria, the IYC warned that anything short of resource control will be disastrous to the economic survival of the nation.
IYC leader, Pereotubo Roland Oweilaemi, who made this assertion in a statement made available to DAILY POST, said, “Niger Delta people will control her resources even if it means to be killed by the trigger-happy and the Niger Deltaphobe military Joint Task Force in the region.”
Oweilaemi, who spoke against the backdrop of news of illegal mining activities in the northern part of the country where powerful individuals are allowed to tap natural resources in their domains, said the Niger Delta people want to control the resources in their lands since solid minerals in the North are now reduced to individual ownership in spite of the nation’s laws which vests ownership of natural resources in the Federal Government.
According to him, “If the Nigerian laws did not mean anything to the illegal miners of solid minerals in the North then Niger Delta people will also take control of all petroleum resources in the southern region notwithstanding, the constitutional provisions.
“Niger Delta oil cannot be subducted to family ownership to Nigeria, while solid minerals in the North are being extracted by those concerned as individual ownership.
“It’s either the Government restructure the Country by allowing States to harness and control the resources in their domains or we will take every steps necessary to exercise control of the resources in our fatherland.
“Despite the fact that illegal mining activities are causing a bloody crisis in the North, the FG has not deemed it necessary to set up a military joint task force to checkmate the illegal mining activities because the solid minerals in the country are seen as private ownership to the feudal Lords. There cannot be one Nigeria if everybody in the Country is not treated with the same measure.
“Everyday people have been killed and property worth billions of naira have been destroyed in the name of illegal oil bunkering activities by the marauding Joint Task Force in the Niger Delta region.
“The FG chose to protect the oil facilities at the expense of the oil-bearing communities because crude oil is seen as a national property, while solid minerals in the North belongs to the individual persons. Is this the one Nigeria they are preaching?”