The on-going debate about the need to reconsider restructuring as alternative solutions to issues bedevilling the country has been taken into account by leaders of Ijaw in the oil-rich Niger-delta region of the country.
in a meeting that took place at kiagbodo, the country home of its national leader, Chief Edwin Clark on (Tuesday) yesterday, Ijaw leaders took a definite position on the raging call to restructure the country.
Briefing journalists shortly after their meeting which lasted four hours, Governor Dickson said leaders took a critical look at issues of restructuring and a further step to reaffirm their position that restructuring was a matter of survival to the Ijaw people.
“the meeting resolved that Ijaw people who are the most affected by the current situation in the country would only vote candidates with genuine and demonstrable support for restructuring irrespective of political party”
In a statement by his Special Adviser, Fidelis soriwei made available to urban express news online; said part of the resolution in the meeting is that the next general election, there would be a referendum on restructuring across the Ijaw land.
“The next election is going to be a referendum on restructuring because it affects the well being and survival of our people. “we will be with candidates with genuine and demonstrable support for restructuring irrespective of the political party”.
continuing, Soriwei said leaders commend the work of the All Progressive Congress committee on restructuring led by Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna state which made far-reaching recommendations on burning issues of restructuring in the country.
“Ijaw leaders is calling on the All Progressive Congress and indeed president Mohammadu Buhari to show the requisite courage to ensure implementation of the committee’s report before 2019 as a test to their sincerity”
“Leaders urge Buhari to show statesmanship and the courage to commence a process of legislation to implement the party’s position on restructuring”
He said the meeting also set up a high-powered committee on the issues of restructuring and the report of the APC committee on restructuring.
“The committee which has five representatives each from the three zones to which the Ijaw nation is divided includes west, the central and the east has three weeks to submit its reports”
“We have also examined the subject matter of restructuring, as we urge that people shouldn’t play politics with issues of restructuring”. “as far as we are concern, its about the survival and well being of our people, it is about the stability of Nigeria. “it is far more beyond politics, the Ijaws are passionate about it”.
“We commend all Nigerians from where-ever they come from who are in support of this issues of restructuring”
Concerning the recommendations of the All progressive congress committee, Soriwei said the leaders of Ijaw nation call on the president to lead the charge and restructure the country; adding that it is the only way that can secure an equitable, just and fair Nigeria”.
He said high powered committee had been set up on these particular concerns of restructuring, the APC report and other matters.
The meeting had in attendance, chief Clark, governor of Bayelsa state, Henry sariake Dickson, deputy governor of Delta state, Mr Kingsley otuaro, former minister of Aviation, Alabo Graham Douglas, former minister of police Affairs chief Broderick Bozimo, National Assembly members and traditional leaders.
Others at the meeting were Chief Pius Sinebe, Chief Wellington Okrika, Dan Ekpebide, Chief PY Biakpara , Joel Bisina, Chief David Pere, Chief Robinson Ogunkoru, Pastor Imeleye Emmanuel, the IYC President, Rowland Pereotubo, Bishop Godwin Soroaye, Graham Douglas, Prof Dagogo Fubara, Nimi Briggs, Pr. Steve azaiki, Chief Francis Doupkolagha, Chief TK Okorotie, Justice Francis Tabai , Prof. Dimie and others.