President Muhammadu Buhari, on Tuesday at the State House in Abuja held a high-level meeting with leaders to seek ways to end the militancy and the sabotage of oil infrastructure in the Niger Delta region.
The president pitched a vision of unity and progress for the country in which peace reigns. He said peace, security, investment and prosperity are linked together, adding that “if we give peace a chance, investors will come here to invest. Nobody will invest in an insecure environment”.
President Buhari said the problems his administration found on the ground were many, as illustrated in collapse of oil prices, inability of 27 of the 36 states of the Federation to pay salaries, absence of savings to fall back and having to deal with an elite who didn’t seem to care.
In welcoming the 16-point request presented for negotiation by the Niger Delta leaders, President Buhari said he was still expecting reports from officials he had instructed to review the implementation of the Amnesty program to determine where government fell short so that amends can be made.
The president said the service chiefs were putting together their own assessment of the militancy situation, saying “when I have these reports, including this one (just presented), we will revisit the situation (in the region) to ensure that we succeed this time.”
He however cautioned the leaders of the Delta that they had more to do than anyone else to bring peace to the region, given the influence they have on militant groups.
He expressed the determination of his administration to stay focused on its key campaign promises of securing the country, fighting corruption and creating jobs through the improvement of the economy.
“We are determined to make life comfortable and affordable to all Nigerians. If anybody has a country to go to, let him go, we will stay here and salvage our country,” he said.