The Ijaw National Congress (INC), has chided former President, Olusegun Obasanjo, over his recent outburst on resource ownership.
The INC said the erroneous assertion by Obasanjo on the issue which was against the Ijaw nation was a flight of fantasy and a joke taken too far.
INC President, Prof. Benjamin Okaba, who stated this also said the Ijaw people have resolved not to lament anymore but seek and pursue self-determination through the mechanism of peaceful engagement, diplomatic and other non-violent means.
Okaba, who spoke in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, said the Ijaw nation would not be intimidated to keep silent on the issues affecting its people and the ……..Niger Delta at large.
His words: “Obasanjo’s claim that “as long as Nigeria is together, whatever that is under the ground is giving to all Nigerians by God” and that “we are to manage it together” smacks of the wicked script of the Nigerian state against the Ijaw and their resources, which he also perpetuated during his eight years of misadventure in power.
“Also, Obasanjo’s Land Use Decree remains the most obnoxious and catastrophic piece of legislation designed and religiously implemented to undermine the Ijaw and other minority ethnic nationalities in this country and deny them their inalienable right to benefit from their God-given blessings.
“We consider his claim on resource ownership as pernicious, provocative, oppressive and wicked, just as it negates the decade long derivation principle, which was pegged at 100 per cent in 1946.
“It remained so until Nigeria’s independence when it was whimsically reduced to 50 per cent.
“And callously and drastically reduced to a paltry 1.3 per cent and later a meagre 23 per cent when oil and gas replaced cocoa, groundnut and palm oil as the dominant economic mainstay of the country.
“The inequity around the oppressive derivation principle, we all know only changed when oil and gas became the major foreign exchange earner for the Nigerian state”.