Former Minister berates South South leaders over ‘operation Amotekun’ security network.
Jan. 14, 2020
Former Minister of Lands, Housing and Urban Development, Chief Nduese Essien has said that the introduction of South-West security network, codenamed ‘Operation Amotekun’ has exposed the lack of direction among governors in the South-South zone. Essien who made the assertion during an interview in Uyo, lamented that governors of the South East and some state governors in the North have rapidly indicated plans to have similar security network in their zones while the South-South governors remained quiet on the matter. His words, “The introduction of the South-West security outfit ‘Operation Amotekun’ and the rapid adoption by some state governors in the North as well as the plan by South East to have a similar security outfit has exposed lack of direction among the governors in the South-South.”
“For some years now, the South-South governors have not been able to work together in the interest of the zone. Most of them are either pursuing personal interests or their state’s interest to the exclusion of the overall interest of the zone.
“It is very much unlike what happened between 1999 and 2003 when the South-South governors along with members of the National Assembly from the zone stood strongly for the interest of the South-South” Essien recalled that between 2003 and 2007, South- South governors had proposed regional cooperation within the zone and formed their own commission but regretted that subsequent administrations have not been able to follow up.
Lagos Assembly invites Sanwo-Olu’s nominees for final screening He explained that the regional cooperation had contributed to the successes of past governors of the region recorded such as the agitation for the payment of 13 per cent derivation which they succeeded in getting it paid.
“They rallied around the whole country to remove the onshore/offshore oil dichotomy and it was removed. They also worked together for the establishment of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) and it was established. “The agitation for resource control was in the fore-front during this period. Between 2003 and 2007 they proposed regional cooperation within the zone and formed BRACED Commission which regrettably subsequent administrations have not been to follow up. Essien urged leaders of the region to mobilise all avenues to draw attention of authorities concern and governors of the region to rise to occasion to rescue the zone.
“I am now calling on the leaders of the South-South as well as members of the National Assembly from the region to call the attention of these governors to the need for them to put the zone together,” Essien said.