Tony Anichebe, Uyo
Senator Godswill Akpabio, the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, has expressed worry over the widespread looting, arson and other shades of violence in some states in the Niger Delta Region of the country.
Briefing journalists in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom capital on Saturday, Akpabio observed “The scale of destruction which pervaded Uyo, Port Harcourt, Benin and other cities so far calls for vigilance on the part of the residents in the region and a re-dedication of the state governments to the responsibility of protection of lives and properties.”
The minister, who spoke on the #EndSARS protests in his home state, Akwa Ibom, commiserated with the state governments in the Niger Delta Region and persons who may have lost their loved ones or properties to the protest.
He, therefore, urged the youths of the Niger Delta to recognise the fact that infrastructure in their states are to yield benefits to them, noting: “The region years back has serious developmental setback due to the militancy and cannot afford another.
“It is, therefore, important that they view all properties located in the region with a sense of entitlement and do all within their legitimate ambit to protect them.”
Akpabio, who is a former Akwa Ibom governor, appealed to the youths to embrace dialogue being the single most effective means of ending conflicts, addressing grievances, resolving them and birthing assurance of collective prosperity.
On SARS brutality, he admitted that well-meaning people should condemn and seek an end to as well as compensation for the victims.
“There is need for bipartisanship in governance. I want to call for inclusiveness of all arms of governments for peace to prevail. Let us come together to ensure one and united country,” he solicited.
Also speaking, Senator Ita Enang, the Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Niger Delta Affairs, said the youths urged the youths come to the table for negotiation and stop hostilities.
Enang, who condemned the destruction of public and private properties by the protesters, called on the victims to lodge their complaints with the newly inaugurated Judicial Panel of Enquiry.