Apr 03, 2012

Ogoni: Former MOSOP Leader Calls For Concrete Development Programs

The Niger Delta of Nigeria needs a concrete approach to successfully address the area’s development problems, says former MOSOP Leader Ledum Mitee. 

Below is an article published by Vanguard

Former president of the Movement for the Survival of Ogoni People, MOSOP, Ledum Mitee has called for a more concrete approach towards addressing challenges of underdevelopment in the Niger Delta region.

Mitee who spoke in Port Harcourt at the public presentation of a book “Presentation and Reality: Documenting the amnesty process in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria” said the ongoing amnesty program of the federal government was yet to address challenges of underdevelopment and poverty in the region.

According to him, the program had only created unhindered oil exploration and operations in the region. He said to effectively tackle problems of the region the government should go beyond the amnesty and take steps to address infrastructural and poverty problems in the region.

“Uninterrupted flow of oil seems to be the focus of the federal government in the region. The people of the region are poor government is only getting more revenue with the amnesty program which has not translated into development for the region”, he said.

He said it was worrisome that the federal government only picked the amnesty program from the long list of other steps recommended by the Niger Delta Technical Committee that should go with the amnesty towards achieving lasting peace in the region. Mitee said the recent report released by the UNEP on Ogoni was a classical documentation of the threat to live in the region.

Earlier, one of the authors of the book published by Centre for Advanced Social Science, CASS, Dr. Sofiri Peterside said the book was a critical appraisal of the amnesty program in the region and its implication for the future of the area.

He said findings while working on the book showed that even with the amnesty program the psychology of peace had not been taken care of, the people were still bitter with the underdevelopments and poverty in the region.