Vanguard (Lagos)

19 January 2013

Nigeria: Niger Delta Devt - Jonathan Has Drifted, Says Ex-Militant, Tamuno

A former Niger Delta militant leader, Mr. Tamuno George, also known as "General," yesterday, took a swipe at the administration of Dr. Goodluck Jonathan and concluded that it has drifted with regards to the infrastructure development of the Niger Delta for which youths in the region took arms against the Nigerian state before the declaration of the Presidential Amnesty in 2009.

He told Saturday Vanguard in Abuja that President Jonathan would soon lose support from the ex-militants and the generality of the Niger Delta people unless urgent steps were taken to address physical infrastructure development in the region.

According to him, "on paper, there is a lot but on ground, there is nothing happening. For instance the East -West has been there for many years without appreciable progress.".

The ex-militant commander said that those who fought for the emancipation of the region were not asking for the presidency of Nigeria but for key factors that could practically impact on the people's living standard.

His words, "if you have followed the Niger Delta Structure, no Niger Delta agitator asked for us to have the president. What they asked for was meaningful development, infrastructure, resource control, self-emancipation of the Niger Delta. Those are the key issues.

"Development means good roads, hospitals and schools,. We want to live like people that have contributed to the growth of this economy. Those were the key agitations of the Niger Delta people. But as nature would have it today, we have a president that is from the Niger Delta."

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