Saturday, August 13, 2022

MEND withdraws support for Buhari, says president deceived Niger Deltans

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The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta, MEND, has passed a vote of no confidence on President Muhammadu Buhari, saying the president had been making conflicting statements on the politics and economy of the Niger Delta region.

MEND had endorsed Mr. Buhari in the buildup to the 2015 election.

In a statement Sunday by the spokesman of the group, Jomo Gbomo, MEND accused the president of deceiving the Niger Delta region.

“Without prejudice to the pre-2015 presidential election endorsement freely and voluntarily given to President Muhammadu Buhari on January 6, 2015, the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) hereby categorically and unequivocally pass a vote of no confidence on the government of President Buhari.

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“Prior to and after his reluctant meeting with the traditional rulers, opinion leaders and stakeholders of the Niger Delta region under the auspices of Pan Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF) on November 1, 2016, President Muhammadu Buhari has been carrying on arrogantly and making controversial, prejudicial, conflicting and contradictory statements about the politics and economy of the oil-rich region.

“Prior to the inauguration of PANDEF, the several sessions of dialogue held between representatives of MEND, on the one hand; and those of the federal government, on the other hand; where concessions were secured for the release of the Okah Brothers and several other political detainees and prisoners of conscience was a grand deception on the part of the federal government.

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“Furthermore, notice is hereby given to the federal government that all Niger Delta Militant commanders and/or individuals who were tracked and arrested while observing a ceasefire ahead of talks with the FG should be treated well.

“They should be allowed access to their lawyers, the International Red Cross and a delegation from PANDEF so as to ascertain their well-being and ensure they have not been tortured or killed extra judicially,” the statement said.

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