- President Muhammadu Buhari has indicated that he will look into the constitutional 13 percent derivation enjoyed by the Niger Delta region
- The president also said he would look into the issue of infrastructural development in the Niger Delta
- President Buhari gave the reassurance when he received Isoko Traditional Rulers and personalities led by His Majesty Ovrawah Omogha 1, Odiologbo of Oleh, at the Presidential Villa
President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday, July 27, said his administration will look into the constitutional 13 per cent derivation benefit to the Niger Delta region to ensure even spread of developmental projects that meet the needs of the people.
NAIJ.com gathered that the president stated this while receiving Isoko Traditional Rulers and personalities led by His Majesty Ovrawah, Omogha 1, Odiologbo of Oleh, at the Presidential Villa, in Abuja.
President Buhari in a statement by Garba Shehu, the senior special assistant on media and publicity assured the royal fathers that the constitutional provisions for Niger Delta development will be carefully studied for inclusiveness, especially in the prioritization of federal government projects.
“I have listened attentively to your address and I will still update myself with details of development in your area as it relates to oil and gas, and lack of infrastructure.
“I will look at the constitutional 13 per cent derivation and what previous governments have done, in order to know what we can do,’’ the president said.
President Buhari said the Isoko kingdom had very qualified citizens that have distinguished themselves in various professional and entrepreneurial skills in the country, expressing surprise that the domain was not adequately captured in Federal Government appointments.
“I will revisit your address and ask for clarification. I will do my best on this issue,’’ he added.
In his remarks, the president general of the Isoko Development Union and spokesman of the traditional rulers, High Chief Iduh Amadhe, commended President Buhari for “performing well’’ in leadership, while urging him to consider some anomalies in the spread of development projects in the Niger Delta.
“With eight oil fields of flow stations in Isoko land, we appeal to His Excellency to direct NNPC to establish a gas plant and a modular refinery in Isoko land. It will be beneficial to the nation and it will create employment and generate revenue,’’ he said.
High Chief Amadhe said the Isoko community and its indigenes had been side lined in Federal Government appointments, with the last appointment of a minister in 1975, noting that the region was also ignored in siting of federal educational institutions, skill development centres and infrastructure.
“Your Excellency no meaningful project has been sited in Isoko since the inception of the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs,’’ he added.
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NAIJ.com previously reported that militants from the Niger Delta have reportedly declared all National Assembly members from the region as ‘enemies of development’ asking them to be ready to have their properties in the zone blown up for consenting to the cutback of funds to key infrastructural projects for the area in the 2018 budget.
The militants met at the Benin River, Egbema in Delta state, to review the budgetary provisions for various projects in the region and compare them with the wealth obtained from the region’s crude oil.
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