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Tuesday, 15 October 2013

MEND Dismisses National Dialogue, Calls For Focus On Corruption In Jonathan’s Government

The Movement for the
Emancipation of the Niger Delta
(MEND) has dismissed President
Goodluck Jonathan’s inauguration
of an Advisory Committee on the
proposed National Dialogue,
describing it as “another deceit, a
distraction, waste of public funds
and time” which has “absolutely
nothing else to offer.”
In a statement today, it called on
members of the National
Assembly to rise up to their
responsibilities and justify their
huge salaries and fringe benefits.
“Reversing the injustice meted
out especially from the General
Yakubu Gowon and Olusegun
Obasanjo military regimes on the
people of the Niger Delta, is one
of such responsibilities,” the
statement said.
It argued that in Nigeria's return
to democratic governance, the
unjust distortion of the Nigerian
Constitution by military dictators
has been widely acknowledged.
“This mutilation of the pre-
independence constitution laid
the foundation for militancy in
the Niger Delta. Military dictators
on account of oil, stripped the
indigenes of the Niger Delta of
their land and God given mineral
resources which have for 53
years been used to develop other
parts of Nigeria while the people
of the Niger Delta survive in
abject poverty without basic
necessities such as potable
water, electricity, roads, schools,
habitable shelter to mention a
On the part of civilian
administrations, MEND said that
understanding the illegality of the
constitution mutilation by the
military, they have been quick to
amend convenient sections of the
constitution carefully avoiding
areas to do with the theft of the
land of the people of the Niger
Delta by individuals hiding under
the cloak of the "Federal
Government" in collusion with
Western governments and their
accompanying oil companies,
thus attempting to legitimize an
obvious crime.
“The fact that this crime has
continued unchallenged for more
than four decades does not make
it more palatable to the indigenes
of the Niger Delta who have
endured a terrible crime which
the world has found convenient
to ignore,” the movement said.
“Instead of wasting time to rant
over what can be expressed in
the opinion columns of
newspapers, or radio and
television talk shows at a reduced
cost, our National Dialogue
should focus on Corruption: The
Mother of all terrors which is
tantamount to this government,”
MEND stressed.
In the absence of this
constitutional step, the group
said it agreed with the late Otto
von Bismarck who once
remarked, “The great questions of
the time will be decided, not by
speeches and resolutions, but by
iron and blood”.

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