I Couldn’t Perform In 2016 Because Of Niger Delta Militants-Buhari

By Ikenga Chronicles January 2, 2017

President Muhammadu Buhari has again started the new year with a wrong foot as alleged in many quarters blaming the poor performance of the 2016 budget on the activities of militant groups who vandalised critical economic infrastructure and disrupted oil production in the Niger Delta.

Buhari spoke through the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina  on Sunday, January 1 when he appeared on Kakaaki, a current affairs programme on Africa Independent Television(AIT).

Adesina said: “From the last statistics that I had, the budget performed about 40 per cent. I don’t know what the current performance could be.”

“The level of performance was simply because it was not factored into the budget that insurgency will start in the Niger Delta.”

”We went from a projection of 2.2 million barrels of oil production down to one million and below.”

”So, how would the budget perform? How will the economy be revived in the shortest possible time? How will food be brought to the table of Nigerians?” he asked.

Adesina also blamed the dismal state of public power supply on the same Niger Delta militants.

He blamed the drastic reduction in the number of megawatts of electricity on the militants whom he accused of sabotaging gas installations located mainly in the Niger Delta’’ he said.

He added: “Don’t forget that somebody from that region was in power for five or six years.”

‘’How come that that agitation would start within the first year of another person being in power? I think that it’s just that those people have not seen themselves as stakeholders in this country.”

“People need to realise that the elections have been concluded, won and lost. The previous government is gone and gone forever. If another party will come into power in the future, it will not come in that fashion.”

‘’But some people are still in entrenched positions. They are still in the pre-May 2015 mode. They need to get out of that mode and know that the coach has moved” he said.

On the quest by the people of the Niger Delta to have dialogue with the Federal Government and the apparent reluctance of the government to hold the dialogue, Adesina said  Buhari was waiting for the leaders in the oil-rich region to reach a common position on the issues as well as the right personalities they hope to represent them during the dialogue.

“The president will always tell Niger Delta elders that visit (the Villa) that it is very important that we get these people under the same umbrella because there is no point talking to one group and another group comes and says the group you talked to was fake,we are the real people.”

‘’That is why the president has given that assignment to some people to determine how many are these groups? What is the leadership? What do they want and how can government meet with them?”

“Don’t forget that there was a major meeting with Niger Delta leaders, elders and traditional rulers at the Presidential Villa where they brought a 16-point demand.”

‘’The very next day after that meeting, there was sabotage of pipelines. Now if the leaders, elders and traditional rulers had come to meet the president and something like this happened, that shows you that they are not under one umbrella.’’


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