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NGE urges Avengers to rescind threat to resume hostilities

The Nigerian Guild of Editors has expressed worry over the threat by the Niger Delta Avengers to resume attacks on oil facilities in the oil-rich Niger Delta region.

The Guild stated this is a statement at the end of its Standing Committee meeting which ended at the weekend in Katsina, calling on the Avengers to drop the threat and embrace dialogue in resolving their grievances.

The Guild urged the Federal Government not to resort to the use of force in resolving the matter, stressing that the use of force has never solved any problem.

As stakeholders in the task of nation-building, the Guild said it is worried by the recent show of military force in the quest to neutralise the threat of the militants, adding that the move has done little to calm the tension, instead it has aggravated it.

The NGE urged the government to dialogue with all stakeholders, including the aggrieved militants to resolve the problems in the region, insisting that the only path to peace is dialogue.

“The Guild notes that renewed hostilities in the Niger Delta will reduce Nigeria’s daily oil output, which will in turn deny the country the benefits of the current marginal increase in the price of crude.

Anything that’s capable of returning Nigeria to economic recession should be avoided,” the Guild stated.

The NGE appealled to traditional rulers in the region to use their offices and goodwill to call the Avengers and any other militant group in the region to order.

“As royal fathers and leaders of thought, we urge them to play a leading role in the resolution of any breakdown in communication between the Federal Government, oil majors and the militants.

We cannot afford another bout of force majeure by oil majors on account of insecurity in the region”.

The Guild also noted the increasing crime rate in the country, especially kidnappings and communal clashes and called on security agencies to rise to the occasion.

The Guild urged the Federal Government to deploy the relevant security agencies to check the pervasiveness of these crimes.

Read Also: Niger Delta Avengers urged to be patient with FG

“The widening spread and growing frequency of kidnappings and allied criminal acts do not only threaten the nation’s socio-political stability,

they also rob Nigeria of income as potential investors are scared of coming into the country while in some instances, existing investors are being forced to leave the country. Either way, the nation loses,” the NGE stated.

On the 2018 budget proposal currently before the National Assembly, the NGE expressed concern on the size of the recurrent as against the capital expenditures, stressing that the trend, which is inimical to any country’s development, has continued for so long.

The Guild therefore called for prudence and innovative budgeting in order to achieve a reversal in the nearest future.

On the state of the media, the Guild expressed worry that in spite of the country exiting economic recession, the media industry is mired in distress and recommend that stakeholders should come together to seek the way forward.

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