As part of measures towards finding lasting solutions to the crisis in the Niger Delta which has crippled oil production in the country, Governor Ifeanyi Okowa has called for an all-embracing dialogue involving all stakeholders, including those with foreign interests.
The governor made the call when the Deputy Chief of Mission from the United States of America’s embassy in Nigeria, Mr David Young, paid him a visit in Asaba.
According to the governor, “the oil companies, the federal government and all stakeholders should sit down and create the environment that will engender lasting peace in the Niger Delta.”
“The more we dialogue, the more we are going to find solutions,” Governor Okowa said, “it is unfortunate that we find ourselves in this situation because of the mono-economy which is not good enough for the country.”
While disclosing that his administration was making efforts to ensure lasting peace and calling for aggrieved parties to adopt dialogue, the governor emphasized, “it appears that we are beginning to see results and peace is returning to the region because we cannot have meaningful solutions through military approach; we are encouraging agitations by dialogue because, we can achieve greater success without destroying our economic facilities.”
He thanked the government of the USA for its interests in the affairs of Nigeria, especially in the area of achieving peace in the Niger Delta, saying that his administration was doing a lot to empower the youths through different skill acquisition programmes.
Mr Young had told the governor that he was in the state as part of his fact-finding mission to the Niger Delta, stating, “the US believes that dialogue is very important in resolving grievances; we encourage Nigerians to exploit mechanisms for dialogue in moving forward,”