Friday, April 23, 2021 10:18 pm
By Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt
A platform for one of the ethnic groups in Rivers, the Ikwerre People’s Congress, IPC, has asked the Minister of Petroleum (State) Mr. Timipre Sylva to resign over his claims that the International Oil Companies operating in Nigeria cannot relocate their headquarters to Niger Delta because of insecurity.
The Convener of IPC, Comrade Livingstone, Wechie said noted that Sylva made the claim last weekend in Abuja when the Niger Delta Nonviolence Agitators Forum NDNAF invested him as its patron and Peace Ambassador.
But Wechie said IPC as the socioeconomic and sociopolitical platform of Ikwerre ethnic nation views the statement by the Minister as an affront, “a sheer blackmail and a deliberate act of sabotage by Slyva against the region where he comes from and on whose sacrifice he enjoys all his political patronage.
He added that by his comments, Slyva has mocked and spat on the graves of those who were martyred for the minority struggle.
“Our son Timi Sylva who has now conspired against our interest and development could toe this line of diplomatic mischief against the region that solely gives economic life and survival to the whole of Nigeria.
“The Minister’s view is ingloriously emboldening the IOCs and validating their spite for our region and the Nigerian state and this is highly regrettable coming from a leader in the region who once served as a Governor of a state,” the group added.
It further accused the Minister of embarking on a voyage of destruction and that the people of region may soon see him as an agent of the enemy forces and conspiracy.
While accusing Slyva of playing the script of those who delight in the impoverishment and underdevelopment of Niger Delta region, IPC claimed that the oil producing region is the safest in the country.
“For the avoidance of doubt, as at today, our region which is the only hope for Nigerias economic survival is the safest place in Nigeria and most investment friendly part of the Country.
“It is nonetheless curious and most insulting that the region can only be regarded safe for Oil and Gas production and Operations accruing unaccounted billions of Dollars to the federation account and to foreign home states of the International Multinational Oil Companies IOCs with nothing to show for it except for environmental destruction, blood and oil spill masterminded by the IOCs and some agents, yet the region is not deserving to host the IOCs Administrative Headquarters,” said IPC.
The group added that if at all there is any form of insecurity in the region, it is only because of the injustices meted to the people by the IOCs and some of their government agents sabotaging laws including, the Local Content Act with disdain and impunity against the Nigerian state.
“Finally, whereas we distance our raped region from the bad light that the Minister is delightedly and selfishly portraying her.
“We demand not only the immediate relocation of the IOCs Administrative Headquarters to our land, but further demand an immediate retraction of these vexatious remarks by him followed by an unreserved apology to the entire region or he should immediately resign his appointment as Minister for Petroleum (State) or be sacked by President Muhammadu Buhari without any further delay, failure to which the rest of the region should quickly speak up and mobilize for Timipre Sylva’s removal from office,” the group concluded.