Only dialogue can end militancy in Niger Delta – Minister

MINISTER of Niger Delta Affairs, Pastor Usani Uguru Usani has identified dialogue has the best option to end militancy in the Niger Delta region.

Usani who stated this on Friday during the opening ceremony of a retreat of top management staff of the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs holding in Calabar said the Federal Government would always choose the path of dialogue in its efforts at ending militancy in the Niger Delta.

He said the Federal Government was evolving ways to dialogue with the Niger Delta avengers in order to end the bombing of oil installations.

The minister said the objective of the retreat with the theme ‘The Niger Delta: Building Partnership for Development was to enable the ministry actualise its mandate, review its strategy and chart a way forward for development.’

He added that the ministry was established as a response to the peculiar circumstances of the Niger Delta region.

“Every nation, every successful government must listen to the agitations of the people.

“We must keep talking, listening to the people and making appropriate response for sustenance of development and peace.

“New challenges have informed us to refocus and re-address our strategies and that is why we are here today.

“We have brought in people from different development partners to brainstorm together so that we can achieve that policy focus,” he said.

Also speaking, Prof Cladius Omoleye-Daramola, Minister of State, Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs, said that the retreat was organised to fashion out ways of moving the ministry forward in view of the present challenges.

On the Oron-Calabar federal road, Omoleye-Daramola said that the previous sketch of the road was wrong, adding that the ministry has designed another sketch and would commence work as soon as funds were released.

“The former sketch was designed to enter Calabar city, and this would destroyed a lot of structures.

“We have re-designed the sketch to avoid destruction of many structures,” he said.