The people of Ogoni in Rivers State have threatened to boycott the 2019 general elections if the Federal Government fails to carry out the speedy clean up of their impacted environment and address the issue of insecurity in the area.
They also threatened to pass a vote of no confidence on President Muhammadu Buhari as Minister of Petroleum, for his slow pace of implementation of the UNEP report on the Ogoni environment.
These were part of the communiqué reached at the Ogoni General Assembly and read by the national coordinator of Ken-Saro-Wiwa Associates, Chief Gani Topba at Bori, the traditional headquarters of Ogoni ethnic nationality in the state.
According to the communiqué, Ogoni people were killed by unknown gunmen daily without any proactive measures by the Federal Government to address the ugly trend.
The people alleged that the federal government wasonly interested to lease Ogoni oil field to multi-national oil companies to destroy the environment and impoverish the people, while Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) on the one side aided and abetted killings and crisis in Ogoni land.
They also called on the Federal Government to reverse the decision to re-lease Oil Miles Licences (OML II) which belongs to Ogoni to any multinational oil company including SPDC, and insisted that all the leased oil fields should be returned to federal government until the judgment that executed Ken-Saro-Wiwa and eight others in 1995 was reversed. Ogoni people the statement said, would not have any negotiation in respect of oil exploration in Ogoni if the 1995 military tribunal judgment was not reversed to allow their refugees in diaspora to return to their father’s land in Ogoni. The people also included the leader and coordinator of Ken-Saro-Wiwa Associates, Chief Gani Topba to lead other stakeholders in Ogoni to a meeting scheduled by Federal Government on the issue of oil exploration and the clean-up exercise slated for tomorrow in Abuja.
However, the stakeholders and the people of Ogoni have resolved to comply to the non-violent approach in their quest for social, economic, political and cultural justice as enunciated by their fore- fathers.
In his remarks, the Coordinator of Ken-Saro-Wiwa Associates, Gani Topba commended the security agencies, especially the Commissioner of Police in Rivers State for the sustenance of peace and timely approach to avert criminal activities in Ogoniland.