*Dakuku Peterside hails peaceful Ogoni struggle
*PDP identifies enemies of Ogoni people
The representative of the Rivers South East Senatorial District, Senator Magnus Ngei Abe, has assured Ogoni people that they would soon feel the impact of the mandate they gave him in the December 10, 2016, legislative rerun election in the state.
He gave this assurance in a goodwill message to Ogoni people on the 2017 Ogoni Day Celebration, in statement signed by his spokesman, Parry Saroh Benson, and issued in Port Harcourt, on Wednesday.
The Senator said he was happy for the massive support that the people of Ogoni gave him and that he had commenced initiatives in realizing his campaign promises to them.
Senator Abe stated that Ogoni made him proud by their unflinching support and votes cast for him on the December 10 re-run election, adding that by their votes they had made a statement and drawn the respect of the entire Rivers people on their principled stand to go to the centre.
The former Secretary to Rivers State Government commended them for reposing confidence in him to deliver the dividends of democracy, pointing out that their decision would not go unrewarded.
He continued: “There were people who took pleasure in instigating crisis in Ogoni communities in order to affect their unity. I, therefore, urge the Ogoni people to come together in unity to find lasting solution to the current wave of inter and intra communal crises that have bedeviled the area.”
To this end, he said, plans were underway to end the bloodshed in Ogoni communities, pointing out that they would never allow external interference to come in between them and their fellow Ogoni brothers and sisters.
Senator Abe enjoined them to ensure that peace prevailed in Ogoniland in order to create an enabling environment for the 1 billion dollar-clean-up-project initiated by President Muhammadu Buhari, assuring them of the political will of the federal government led to implement the UNEP report satisfactorily.
Meanwhile, ahead of the 2017 Ogoni Day Celebration, governorship candidate of All Progressives Congress, APC, in the 2015 general elections, Dr Dakuku Peterside, said he identified with and supported the Ogoni struggle because it represented the struggle of all.
Dr. Peterside, who spoke in Port Harcourt, called on the Ogonis to unite and work with other ethnic groups to accelerate the aspirations and the accomplishment of the dream of the founding fathers of the Ogoni struggle.
He stated: “We must enter a new phase of cross ethnic groups engagement, recognizing that it is a collective struggle of all oppressed people all over the world.”
Dr. Peterside who is also the Director-General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, saluted the resilience of the Ogonis and their industry over the years and assured them of his preparedness to back every genuine effort to make the people great.
He commended the Federal Government on the Ogoni cleanup but was quick to ask for an accelerated process and the factoring-in of human empowerment of the people whose farmlands and streams have been destroyed due to prospecting and production of hydrocarbons over the years.
The NIMASA DG said that the environment was the greatest gift of Mother Nature and so must be preserved for the benefit of our generations yet unborn, stating that the environment and economic prosperity were interwoven.
He said that all must collectively work to protect the environment and commended the leadership of the Movement for the Survival of Ogoni People, MOSOP, for keeping the spirit of the struggle alive.
Still on the Ogoni Day celebration, the Chairman of the Rivers State Chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Chief Felix Obuah, has said that the real enemies of the Ogoni people were those who allegedly used the army, other security agencies, and armed political thugs to hijack election materials and rigged the December 10, 2016, re-run election in the area.
Chief Obuah, in a statement in Port Harcourt urged the people of Ogoni to be vigilant, “as those same persons would, in the coming days, also hijack the process of the Ogoni Clean-up, and divert into private use part of the 1 billion dollar clean-up project fund to recover their political campaign expenses.”
The PDP Chairman regretted that several Ogoni sons and daughters have been allegedly killed by “desperate All Progressives Congress, APC, politicians in the area, to win election.”
The PDP chairman called on Ogoni people to reflect on those killed and the manner the military and other security agencies allegedly hijacked election materials and rigged election in favour of the APC candidates in the area with a view to appropriately labeling them real enemies of the Ogoni people.