Planned relocation of DPR office to Abuja nepotic, insensitive, Ijaw youth tells Nigerian govt
The umbrella body of Ijaw youths, the Ijaw Youths Council (IYC) Worldwide, on Wednesday vowed to resist plans by the Federal Government to relocate the headquarters of the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) from Lagos to Abuja.
In a statement by the IYC President, Peter Timothy Igbifa, the group urged the Federal Government to transfer the DPR head office to any of the cities in the Niger Delta to avoid “unimaginable restiveness” in the region.
He said the decision to relocate the DPR head office to Abuja smacked of insincerity on the part of the government which had earlier directed all oil multinational companies to move their headquarters to the Niger Delta.
He said the planned relocation of the DPR head office to Abuja was to give the northerners unfettered access to the activities of the agency.
Igbifa said: “We have it on good authority that because of the autonomous roles the DPR will play in the oil sector whenever the PIB becomes law; the Federal Government is planning to move the headquarters of the department from Lagos to Abuja.
“This idea is nepotic, insensitive, and designed to give northerners unfair advantage to all the benefits that DPR will bring to the table when it eventually acquires independence from the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) as stipulated in the PIB.
“It is crystal clear that the Federal Government has always paid lip service to the development of the Niger Delta region. In one breath the government asked oil companies to relocate their headquarters to the region, in another breath this same government is planning to move the DPR head office from Lagos to Abuja instead of relocating it to the Niger Delta region.
We condemn this move and warn that this development will threaten the peace in the Niger Delta region, which gives DPR and other oil multinationals reasons for existence. The Niger Delta will not fold its hands and watch this happen.
This is an opportunity for the federal government to lead by example by first relocating the headquarters of the DPR to any of the cities in the Niger Delta region. This will show the government’s seriousness and commitment and enable other oil companies to do the same.”
“Anything contrary to this is unacceptable and will be resisted by all the Niger Delta stakeholders. It is high time the federal government walked its talk. What is due to the Niger Delta must be given to us to create equity and fairness.”