27 July 2014

Nigeria: PIB - Civil Society Group Threatens to Boycott 2015 Elections

As the 2015 general election beckons, a civil society group, Environmental Rights Action/Friends of the Earth Nigeria (ERA/FoEN) has threatened that the non-passage of the petroleum industry bill (PIB) may trigger apathy in the elections.

The group said that if the National Assembly refuses to pass the bill before the expiration of this current term, the civil society would be left with no option than to rally the masses not to waste their votes on any politician in the forthcoming election.

Executive Director of the group, Godwin Uyi Ojo, at the end of a one-day seminar in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, told Sunday Independent that the group was disappointed by the attitude of the lawmakers whom he said have caved in to the blackmail by the multinational oil companies to ensure that the bill does not see the light of day.

"The lawmakers are at the National Assembly at the behest of the people. We will certainly make the PIB a big campaign issue by mobilising the masses not to vote for any lawmaker that does not want the bill to be passed," he said.

On the non-implementation of the United Nations Environment Programme report on environmental degradation in the Niger Delta, Ojo said the group had concluded arrangements to stage a peaceful march in Abuja on August 4 to drive home the failure of the federal government to implement the report.

"The August 4 march is very symbolic, given the security challenge in the country. However, we want to draw the attention of government and the world to the non-implementation of the report and condemn government's complicity in that regard," he said.

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