Nigeria and its citizens must do everything morally possible to sustain the peace in the Niger Delta, the chairman of the Committee on Public Account for state, Hon Moshood Oshun has urged.
Oshun also warned against provocative comments from any section of the country relating to the Niger Delta as well as crude oil.
He said the unity of Nigeria should be uppermost in the heart of its citizens whose actions and thinking must reflect peace and the need to live as neighbours.
According to the lawmaker, the federal government cannot be working tirelessly to resolve the complaints and agitations of the people of the region while some Nigerians would continue to make statements that could dent such efforts.
Oshun spoke in reaction to a video currently trending of an alleged aide to the Jigawa state government claiming that the state owns the oil in Bayelsa and Delta.
The aide, whose name is not mentioned, said in the video: “we shall do everything with our beings, everything with our blood to defend our oil in Bayelsa. It belongs to Jigawa state.”
Oshun noted that the government’s effort to make the Niger Delta a better place was yielding results as a result of the regular visits of acting President Yemi Osinbajo to states in the region.
“Apart from its economic importance to Nigeria, the Niger Delta remains an integral part of the nation and there is no comfort where a part of your body hurts.
“The federal government must be encouraged by all Nigerians to ensure that this peace is sustained and we can do that by our actions and comments. We must avoid provocative statements.
“We quite understand the contest under which the aide, if he is one, is trying to argue his point. Jigawa is part of Nigeria and the constitution places the ownership of all resources in any part of Nigeria on the country.
“But there are ways we can drive our points to educate and enlighten the people without necessarily breathing hot.
In Lagos, for example, we have been clamouring for special status and to ensure that we get a major share of the value added tax because this is where you generate the largest part of such in the country,” Oshun said.
The lawmaker, however, noted that Lagos, being law-abiding, has carried out its agitation in line with democratic and legal tenets and without threats.
He commended the federal government for taking the decision to end the agitation in the region without taking a look at political considerations or divide.
He also commended the elders and leaders of the region for assisting the government and creating the opportunity for peace to reign.
“Prof Osinbajo has visited Delta, Rivers, Bayelsa and others. He would be visiting Akwa Ibom again. All these are meant to put the region on a sound footing.
“It is very true that the Niger Delta has suffered neglect by successive government. Even former President Goodluck Jonathan could only do a little concerning the restiveness in the region.
“The current government is proving that actions and words from a sincere heart have their benefit,” he added.