Kogi controls iron ore mined from Itakpe. Why can’t Niger Delta control their oil — Obong Victor Attah

A former governor of Akwa Ibom State has bared his mind on the ongoing resource control argument.

According to Victor Attah, Niger Delta has a feeling that the Northerners milk their region, pollute it and tell them goodbye.

Victor Attah said “There is this concept of diversification. When you talk about diversification, people just think it has to do with going into agriculture, apart from oil.

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“It is not sufficient. Diversification should come in more areas than just agriculture.

“If we had diversified our source of power, today we would not feel it so much, at least certainly not in the effect of these bombings (of oil and gas installations).

“Today, we are dependent almost exclusively and entirely on the gas turbines and then oil.

“If we had had hydro, coal and solar, those boys would see that they are hurting themselves.

“We could say, you have cut off the source of power in your area, so you do not have power but the other parts of the country would still have power.

“You will diversify in several other areas and one of the areas you must look at urgently and you must begin to give confidence to other people who have these resources is in the solid minerals.

“Itakpe community co-owns the Iron Ore that is mined from there. Why won’t Niger Delta communities also co-own oil in their communities?

“Why can’t we come out with ‘Mineral Bill’?

“The 10 percent that was supposed to be given, they said no, that because this one is governance bill.

“Is that happening in other areas of mineral exploitation? It is a question we have to answer.”

Reacting to President Buhari’s style of leadership, Obong Victor Attah stated that “You would realize that the people steering APC, were in opposition at the time to the government in place.

“They did not like the idea, because they had this notion that whatever the government does, the opposition must oppose.

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“So, they opposed the conference and I think they are just holding on to that for whatever reason.

“I read where the current Secretary to the Government of the Federation said he is so busy with governance and that it would take him about seven days to go through the report (National confab report).

“How can you be busy governing without being interested in knowing how the people want to be governed?

“Fiscal federalism must come and arrangement within the country is in that report.

“That report cannot and must therefore not be ignored,” he said.