Former militants from the nine states of the Niger Delta have disowned the embattled Pan Niger Delta Elders Forum (PANDEF) over alleged acts of improper consultation and exclusion of key stakeholders from the region in the negotiations with the federal government.
According to the Ex-militant leaders under the aegis of the Ex-Niger Delta Freedom Fighters and Leadership Forum, though the key stakeholders including the forum have endorsed the choice of the leader of Pan Niger Delta Peoples Congress, His Royal Majesty Pere Charles Ayemi Botu, Paramount Ruler of Siembiri Kingdom, the loss of confidence in the Chief E.K Clarke’s PANDEF is a clear case of correcting the mistakes of the past.
The forum of Ex-militant leaders, made up of beneficiaries of the Presidential Amnesty in 2009 and led by Comrade Excel Yerindideke Toriomo, stated in a statement made available to journalists via email, declared: “We have deemed it fit and have endorsed the leader of Pan Niger Delta People Congress, His Royal Majesty Pere Charles Ayemi Botu, Paramount Ruler siembiri Kingdom, we are not comfortable with Dr Ek Clark led PANDEF.
“Chief Ek Clark is using PANDEF to get political recognitions since he lost power in the presidency since 2015, Dr. Clark has brought the region more pain than good, the entire region has lost confidence in his person, PANDEF gave an ultimatum to the federal government, when the ultimatum was given and why the ultimatum was withdrawn we were not informed.
“What was discussed with federal government was not revealed to us, PANDEF has not deemed it fit to call for a stake holder meeting across the region with the various ethnic groups to know their pain, so has to chat a way forward for our region,we need infrastructural development, industrialization, youth empowerment and community development, good road network, we say no to kidnapping, militancy, hostage and pipeline vandalism.
“We call on the federal government to fulfill their campaign promises so as to attract meaningful development to our region. We hereby call on the federal government to work with the leader of Pan Niger Delta People Congress, His Royal Majesty Charlse Ayemi Botu paramount Ruler siembiri Kingdom. He has the leadership prowess and adminstraitive competence to bring uncommon transformation to our region”