Anglican Church Cautions Niger Delta Avengers

The Most Revd OKOH

The Primate Of The Church Of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) and Archbishop of Abuja Diocese, The Most Rev’d Nicholas D. Okoh, has called on Niger Delta Avengers, the militant group that has claimed responsibility for the bombing of oil pipelines installations in the region, to embrace peace and dialogue with government if they have grievances.

The Primate made this remark in his Presidential Address to the 3rd Session of the 9th Synod of Abuja Diocese, held at All Saints Church, Wuse, Abuja.

He noted that the renewed pipeline vandalism in the Niger Delta, was not in the best interest of Nigeria, and urged those behind the bombings to desist from the act forthwith.

The Church called on the Niger Delta Avengers to cease hostility against the government while embracing dialogue, noting that Nigeria, which is currently engaged with too many battles cannot afford to start another one with militants in the oil producing areas of the federation.

While urging the Federal Government to tread cautiously in its attempts to resolve the growing crises in the Niger Delta, the Church called on it to seek collaboration with the host communities in its efforts to secure oil pipelines.

He also urged the Federal Government to open the space for immediate revival of the dwindling Nigerian economy by creating investment friendly atmosphere to attract investors.

He lauded the efforts of President Muhammadu Buhar’s administration at diversifying the Nigerian economy, urging his government to initiate more cutting-edge approaches aimed at a meaningful engagement of foreign investors for revival of the economy of the country.

He said, “Creating an investment friendly environment in the country will more pragmatically give us what we need. Factors that investors will need to thrive, especially security, power and other amenities should be made available, while investors would be naturally attracted.

The Primate  also urged the Federal Government and Nigerians in general should collectively find lasting solutions to the problem of insurgency, killings by herdsmen, fuel scarcity, pipeline vandalism and wide spread corruption, all he noted, are factors that often inhibit the growth of economy, and the nation in general.

On the menace of herdsmen across the federation, the Primate said, “The Federal Government should make a policy to deliberately disarm the herdsmen” as a means of preventing the springing up of ethnic militias in all the regions of the federation in attempts to resist the rampage by herdsmen”

He advised the government against the plan to set up grazing reserves for herdsmen across the country, stating that the Synod was of the view that such reserves should be built in regions where the Fulanis are more familiar.

He said: “The herdsmen are private businessmen who take away all proceeds of the business, not sharing with either their host communities or the government. We wish to re-echo to the government, state and individuals involved, the recommendation made earlier, that ranches should be built in Fulani localities for modern animal husbandry,




     

     

    “In some parts of Nigeria, people are already grappling with high population growth and land does not expand. Nobody’s land should, therefore, be given forcefully to anybody in any guise.”

    The Synod calls on the National Assembly to drop the plan to propose a bill on grazing reserve as the issue has started heating up the polity.

    Primate Okoh also commended the anti-corruption war by the President and its efforts to block all leakages in the country’s revenue, stressing that the war against corruption was a noble cause.

    The Synod urged the government to ensure that its scope is widespread across all the tiers and arms of government at the Federal, State and Local Government areas in Nigeria.

     

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