Vice President Yemi Osinbajo met with some state governors, ministers and security chiefs at the Presidential Villa today to begin discussions on ending cases of attacks by militants on oil installations in Niger Delta.
At a marathon meeting on Tuesday at the presidential villa Abuja, Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo agreed that the military troops will vacate Niger Delta communities but remain on the waterways.
This new development is to allow for the dialogue with the militants by the delegation of the President Buhari-led federal government.
Earlier today, we reported it here that the vice president was meeting with some state governors and security chiefs as the discussions are focused on ending cases of attacks by militants on oil installations in the Niger Delta region.
Some of the governors in attendance include; Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State, Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State, Governor Olusegun Mimiko of Ondo State , Governors Seriake Dickson of Baylesa, Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State, Governor Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia, Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom, and Cross River was represented by the deputy governor, Ivara Esu.
Briefing the media after the meeting, the governor of Delta state, Ifeanyi Okowa, said:
“We were briefed by the service chiefs and the governors also have their own perspectives along with the minister of state for petroleum. We have taken a lot of decisions which will help us mitigate what is going on currently in the states particularly Bayelsa and Delta.
“We believe we are going to find solution to it. One of such is that there is a need for us to share intelligence which is very important and for us to be proactive, working together with the various stakeholders in the states to achieve a better result going forward.
“We have also agreed that there is a need to distill military operations directly in communities, but the military needs to actually remain on our waterways to ensure that we adequately man the waterways itself while we engage the communities and that engagement process is starting any moment from now,” he said.
On the amnesty programme, he said: “I don’t think the amnesty has been stopped. I think the process is still ongoing. We have a special adviser in charge of amnesty and he is doing very well. I am aware that he did come in to talk with some of the communities along with the advocacy team that was put up in Delta state. He did brief us today and I believe it is going to be maintained.”
The governor of Edo state, Adams Oshiomhole, who also attended the meeting said: “Nigeria is not at war and we cannot be at war with ourselves. If we have conflicts, we will talk through those conflicts. There are laws that have to be enforced. I think that in all of these the whole idea is to find peace that is functional, that creates environment for very decent Nigerians to live their lives.”
The minister of state for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu, was also in attendance, along with service chiefs and key ministers.