MILITANTS fighting the federal government over oil community rights appear to be divided after a group which calls itself the Reformed Niger Delta Avengers (RNDA) broke away from its parent body and declared it is prepared to negotiate with the government.
Over recent months, militancy has returned to Nigeria’s oil producing region with the Niger Delta Avengers (NDA) blowing up pipelines and installations. Despite attempts by the government to initiate talks and other groups like the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (Mend) agreeing to sit down and negotiate, the NDA has been adamant that it will not enter into dialogue.
Mend has already put together its negotiating team and exasperated with the NDA’s intransigence, RNDA has decided to break away and threatened to expose the identities of the main group’s fighters and their sponsors if it does not cease hostilities. RNDA spokeswoman Cynthia Whyte, said that a majority of Niger Deltans want to sit down and negotiate peace.
She said: “Permit us to begin by introducing the Reformed Niger Delta Avengers (RNDA), a breakaway faction of the Niger Delta Avengers. A majority of us in consideration of the recent personal appeal by His Excellency, former President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, the peace efforts and initiative of the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta and the feeling of guilt over the damage being effected on our environment and at the same time, the government of President Buhari has exhibited political will and backing words with action to clean up the environment, we have decided to join the Mend Aaron Team 2 peace initiative through the clearing house of Niger Delta Dialogue and Contact Group headed by HRH King Alfred Diette-Spiff.
“We will also cooperate with the government by exposing the identities of our comrades, who remain stubborn in their insistence to continue attacks. For example, it will shock the nation to know the Jekyll and Hyde personality behind the pseudonym Brigadier General Murdoch Agbinibo and our sponsors. We also use this opportunity to call on the Indigenous People of Biafra (Ipob), to take advantage of the olive branch concession secured by Mend and renounce the Biafra question which is an anachronism.”
She added that those advising Nnamdi Kanu to do otherwise neither love him nor appreciate the level of treason this simple act of common sense and humility can extricate him from. Ms Whyte added that the Niger Delta will no longer serve in a proxy war to achieve his ambition.
Meanwhile, the Ijaw Human Rights Monitors has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to liaise with former President Goodluck Jonathan to help him in resolving the Niger Delta logjam. Group coordinator Fred Brisibe said that from the body language of former President Goodluck Jonathan after his meeting with President Buhari, there are flickers of light at the end of the tunnel for the bleak situation of uncertainty around the agitation for restructuring.