Ekiti State Governor, Mr Ayodele Fayose, has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to dialogue with the Niger Delta Militants, especially the Niger Delta Avengers so as to end hostilities in the oil rich region.
This, he said, will also save Nigeria’s economy from imminent collapse.
Fayose said the president’s failure to attend the flag-off of the clean-up Ogoni project today, because of the threat from the Niger Delta militants was a demonstration that the President had surrendered to the superior powers of the militants.
Fayose, according to a statement issued by his Special Assistant on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka, said it was shameful and embarrassing that a retired military general could succumb to threat from militants despite what he told Nigerians that he was going to lead from the fronts.
The governor, who wondered why the president was not always interested in visiting states in the country as against his penchant for overseas trips, added that it was time that the President stopped acting like a foreign president.
Stating that the president’s approach to civil unrests of any kind under the government was causing more security problems in the country, he added that, “the President cannot afford to continue to talk tough on issues that dialogue can resolve.”
“Now that the president has surrendered to the threat and intimidation of the Niger Delta Avengers, he should emulate late President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua by having a roundtable talks with the Niger Delta militants.
“By not going to Ogoni today, because of threat from the NDA, our president has shown that he is actually afraid of the militants and the best thing to do in a situation like this is to dialogue with the militants so as to save Nigeria economy from imminent collapse.
“It also shows that the president’s ability to secure Nigeria and its people is doubtful, because if the president could succumb to threat from militants and abandon his official function for his deputy, ordinary Nigerians should seek help elsewhere.
“The president should therefore save Nigeria the agony of military misadventure in the Niger Delta by holding dialogue with the militants with a view to resolving their grievances.”
Fayose also reiterated that “the Niger Delta region as at today is still the golden goose laying the golden egg on which all other regions are surviving.
“Diversification as good as it sounds, takes time. We need to appreciate these regions as our only source of income,” he added.