Over 60 Niger Delta young leaders, including assembly members, present and former commissioners, government appointees and some private sector players across states in the region met in Port Harcourt at the weekend and discussed the raging issue of restructuring.
In a statement made available to THISDAY and signed by a former governorship candidate in Bayelsa State and Chairman, Nigeria Young Professionals Forum, Siasia Moses, the group unanimously demanded for 100 per cent resource ownership, control and management and the restructuring of the current faulty political and economic architecture of Nigeria, and urged the federal government to immediately embark on the process of restructuring else there wonâ€™t be general election or allocation of oil blocks in 2019 in the region.
The statement read in part: â€œThe young leaders are determined in their resolve to put aside ethnicity and stand as one Niger-Delta.
â€œWe must go back to the roundtable and discuss the principles of equity and justice and this must take effect from the highest seat of power to the communities which will birth true federalism in a new peopleâ€™s constitution. As a people united for our future, we must act now.
â€œWe also condemn all forms of hate speech emanating from any part of the country.â€
The group noted that the issues facing the Niger-Delta region requires both collective and personal responsibilities and therefore resolved to look inward and beyond to build a united region.
â€œWe therefore call on all Niger-Deltans to work together in tackling the deep rooted problems facing our people and environment, and define the future of the Niger-Delta.
The young leaders also resolved to carry out proper sensitisation programmes in states across the region and promised to engage with critical stakeholders on their desire to move the country forward based on fairness, justice and equity.