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Planned Relocation: Ijaw youths urge FG to move DPR to South-South

The Ijaw Youths Council Worldwide has warned the Federal Government against its planned relocation of the headquarters of the Department of Petroleum Resources from Lagos to Abuja.

President of the IYC, Peter Igbifa, who handed down the warning in a statement issued in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, on Wednesday, said such move was capable of causing ‘unimaginable restiveness’ in the Niger Delta region.

Igbifa said instead, the apex government should transfer the headquarters of the department to any of the cities in the South-South.

He said, “This idea is nepotistic, insensitive and designed to give northerners unfair advantage to all the benefits that DPR will bring to the table when it eventually acquires independence from the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation as stipulated in the Petroleum Industry Bill.

 “It is crystal clear that the Federal Government has always paid lip service to the development of the Niger Delta region. In one breath, the government asked oil companies to relocate their headquarters to the region, in another breath, this same government is planning to move the DPR head office from Lagos to Abuja instead of relocating it to the Niger Delta region.

“We condemn this move and warn that this development will threaten the peace in the Niger Delta region, which gives DPR and other oil multinationals reasons for existence. The Niger Delta will not fold its hands and watch this happen.

“This is an opportunity for the federal government to lead by example by first relocating the headquarters of the DPR to any of the cities in the Niger Delta region. This will show the government’s seriousness and commitment and enable other oil companies to do same.

“Anything contrary to this is unacceptable and will be resisted by all the Niger Delta stakeholders. It is high the Federal Government walked its talk. What is due to the Niger Delta must be given to us to create equity and fairness. The government should stop running this country with a body language that one section is greater than others,” the IYC President stated.

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