‘Our Struggle Is A Reaction To Years Of Orchestrated State, Constitutional Colonialism’ – Niger Delta Avengers

Militant group The Niger Delta Avengers on Sunday revealed why they
resumed attacks on oil facilities. A statement issued by the group’s
spokesperson, Mudoch Agbinibo, says their attacks restarted because of
the “deliberate move by the military establishment to undermine any
effort of dialogue and negotiations with the people of the Niger Delta.

Titled Don’t blame NDA, the statement read:

We all know that Peace is not the absence of war. Sincerely speaking,
the High Command of the Niger Delta Avengers cannot be blamed for the
continuous bombing of crude oil export pipelines and other oil
installations, since the Government has been relentlessly carrying out
military build ups to continuously harass communities and indigenes of
the Niger Delta after the November 1st meeting of the PANDEF and
President Muhammadu Buhari. 

We see this as a deliberate move by the military establishment to
undermine any effort of dialogue and negotiations with the people of the
Niger Delta.

The path to sustain the cessation of hostilities in the region among
fighters and structures cannot be achieved overnight, when there are
clear cases of deliberate security surge by the Nigerian government.  We
ask for understanding on the side of the PANDEF and the general
public. 

The High Command of the NDA is only reacting to government’s deliberate
attempts to undermine the process to dialogue and negotiations. It will
make a lot of sense on the part of the government of president  
Muhammadu Buhari to restrain the security agents/agencies from engaging
in activities that are inimical to the process, the people and
communities of the Niger Delta. There was high hope and expectations
from the people of the Niger Delta after the November 1st meeting
between PANDEF and President Muhammadu Buhari for a genuine dialogue and
negotiations process to kick-start. Instead the government’s security
establishment is busy building up clogs to the process that will place
our people at position of weakness which is unacceptable to us and  so,
there is bound  to  be equal reaction. 

The idea of communicating with our fathers, leaders and royal fathers
under the leadership of Papa Edwin Kiagbodo Clark’s PANDEF before acting
will only amount to mere propaganda   while the head is being cut off.
We believed that our fathers, leaders and royal fathers are ready to
meet the government of Nigeria with representatives of IOCs and the
neutral observers but not with guns, warships and jet fighters
terrorizing their communities which of course is one of the sixteen
points key demands presented to Mr. President, So the government should
stop the ostrich game.

We did not start this struggle for the sake of bearing arms against the
Nigeria state; it is a reaction to many years of orchestrated state
economic and constitutional colonialism against a region and its people
over six decades. Until the burning issues of resources control, fiscal
federalism and inclusive development are addressed no force will stop
this struggle even with bare hands. 

The government of Nigeria is running against time by undermining the
resolve of the Niger Delta. The government needs the Niger Delta more
than we need the government.

A careful analysis of the directive by general Muhammadu Buhari, to the
security agencies to identify militant leaders and their camps shows
that, the man do not have any sense of history and apology for the roles
he played in the killing of innocent civilians and Ken Saro Wiwa in
Ogoni that were carrying out a peaceful protest in 1995.  President
Muhammadu Buhari should think before he act on this his fifth journey
into national affairs. 

Those obnoxious strategies like Choke Points, Operations Delta Safe,
Operations Crocodiles Smiles etc, are doomed to fail like Operations
Hakuri II, he engineered and administered under general Sani Abacha.
Even the security hierarchy is also sympathizing with his inhuman
dispositions to the Niger Delta question. That is more of the reasons
the High Command of the DNA has given the clear directive to all field
officers to avoid confrontation with security agencies in their line of
duty.

The everyday deployment of military hardwares, houseboat, personnel etc
is a dilemma of government insensitivity and incapacity to the
legitimate demands by the Niger Delta people since 1994 under general
Sani Abacha. 

The Niger Delta struggle is the people’s project. So, the more groups
that are involved the more the festivity. There will be no cold war with
any group and groupings no matter the circumstances of their emergence
and their modus operandi.