* Injects Fresh N35bn Into Amnesty Programme
…As One Feared Dead In Fatal Accident
Vice President Yemi Osinbanjo on Tuesday said that the Maritime University established by the Federal Government would soon kick off as part of means to develop the Niger Delta regions.
Osinbajo made the disclosure on Akure while speaking at the 2nd National Council of the Niger Delta Meeting in Ondo State
He said N2billion had been penned for the take off of the university which is expected to focus on maritime training.
The Vice President also explained that federal government was not going back on its plans of investing heavily in the Niger Delta regions of the country.
He said an inter ministerial committee had been set up by the present federal government to look at various areas of ensuring development for the region.
He said that the federal government had injected another sum of N35 billion into the Niger Delta Amnesty programme to impact the lives of the Niger Delta region.
Mr.Osinbajo said President Muhammadu Buhari was committed to the Amnesty programmme with a view to ensuring sustainable peace in the region.
He said that the clean up of the Ogoni land which the Federal government had embarked upon is a continuous one and would soon be extended to other parts of the Niger Delta regions.
“The Federal Government has started with the clean up of the Ogoni land and we shall continue with the exercise as part of our mission to develop the Niger Delta region and rid it out of pollutions.
“Although, what we are currently doing is also called hydro carbon up and this will not be limited to the Ogoni land alone” he said.
He assured that the federal government was planning on ways to really diversify the economy of the country aside being dependent on oil.
The Vice President also advised that the state government begin investing into agriculture and other means as option for oil in order to boast the economy of their various states.
He later tasked stakeholders in the Niger Delta to allow peace reign in the region noting that President Buhari was very committed at ensuring there is progress.
The Ondo State Governor, Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu said the welfare of the people from the Niger Delta should be given priority considering the terrain they live.
Mr. Akeredolu who spoke in his speech maintained that the federal government should seek to the development of the region to also quench agitations aimed at dividing the country.
He said the Niger Delta regions present a cruel paradox despite being dependent by the country for sustenance adding that it lacks the needed development in terms of basic social amenities.
“We must seize the opportunity offered by this special meeting to ruminate on the methods adopted whose impact have been insignificant in bridging the infrastructural gap.
“It is also incumbent on us to set our priorities right. Embarking on any white elephant projects cannot be in their interest.
“Consequently, it would appear reasonable that all those saddled with the responsibility of alleviating the suffering of those citizens residing in this region should have priorities reflective of the dire needs of the region.
“No doubt, our efforts to fast-track development and peace will depend on how well we are able to interpret existing outcomes against the expectations of our people.
“We are not oblivious of the long history of development intervention in the oil producing areas.
“We are equally aware of the commendable efforts made by past administrations to transform the physical and economic landscape of the region.
“We must, however, not fail to mention the glaring facts of grinding and relentless poverty which has been the lot of the region” he added.
Meanwhile, one person was feared dead and others sustaining injuries while traveling to Ode Aye area of Ondo state.
The Daily Times gathered that victims were delegates on a mission to attend the 2nd National Council on Niger Delta Conference to be attended by the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo on Tuesday.
It was learned that fatal accident which involved about three vehicles occurred at the Agric junction on Okitipupa road.
The Ondo State Command of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) confirmed the accident.
Adekemi Anthonia, Spokesperson of the Ondo Command confirmed the accident at the scene while explaining that the rescue mission from the Ore unit was prompt in its response.
Femi Joseph, spokesman of the Ondo State Police Command also confirmed the accident saying the victims were traveling for the Niger Delta meeting.
“Our men in the scene confirmed one person dead with so many others critically injured in the accident” he said.
He added that the body of the injured victims were later moved down to the state specialists hospital in Okitipupa.