he Federal Government has established two groups to interface with militants involved in attacks on oil pipelines in the Niger Delta region of the country as part of efforts to resolve the crisis.
Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta and Chairman of the Presidential Amnesty Programme, Brig. Gen. Paul Boroh, (retd.), made the comment during a meeting with stakeholders of the Amnesty Programme and the region in Abuja on Friday.
In attendance at the closed door meeting were a prominent activist from the region, Elder Timi Ogoriba, Chief Dan Ekpebide, Mr. Richard Akinika and Mr. Denis Philips.
Boroh said that the establishment of the two teams was working in accordance with expectations as shown by the current calm in the restive region.
He added that the Federal Government was adopting a ‘multitrack’ approach involving all the people in the region because of the importance of information to the resolution of the resource-based conflict.
Boroh said that the meeting was called to discuss the upsurge of militancy in the Niger Delta which had affected the economy of the country and the need to enthrone peace and stabilise the area.
He assured Nigerians that there would be positive development about the economy in view of the current steps being taken. He said that the Amnesty Office would collaborate effectively with security agencies to ensure that the region was stabilised.
He said, “It is important to say that the office is aware of what is happening now. And there are two groups that have been established to interface between the aggrieved persons and the Federal Government. And it is going on appropriately, it is going on very well and that is why there is some cool and calm.”
Speaking shortly after the meeting, leader of the delegation, Ogoriba, said that there was a ceasefire in the region because the group was interfacing with the people involved in the crisis.
He urged the Federal Government to show commitment to the peace process by setting up a dialogue team for the militants to come up with their own.
Ogoriba also advised that the military action in the region should be stopped or not be carried out in a way that could endanger the peace process.
He said that if the exercise was routine as claimed by the military authorities, they should ensure not to carry out actions that could provoke combat in the area.