Niger Delta Avengers have declared fresh war on oil facilities in Nigeria, the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry and others have said such action would have a grave impact on the nation’s economy and its people.
They, therefore, urged the government to engage the militants to avert such attacks.
The group had announced an immediate end to its ceasefire with the Federal Government in a statement posted on its website on Friday.
It had also accused the Federal Government of being insincere despite the commitment by the leaders of the region to broker peace, saying that the government was only interested in the oil being derived from the Niger Delta.
In the statement signed by the group’s spokesman, Murdoch Agbinibo, NDA said Operation Red Economy, which it had declared following the intervention of the Chief Edwin Clark-led Pan Niger Delta Forum, was officially over.
It declared that the fresh attacks would affect the nation’s oil facilities in the region and stop oil production, saying it was not interested in having further negotiations with the Federal Government.
But President, Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, Dr. Frank Jacobs, described the situation as unfortunate, noting that an attack on oil installations at a time when Nigeria was still recovering from arguably its worst economic crisis, would deal a huge blow to its economy.
He said, “It is unfortunate if that is what the NDA wants to do, especially at this time that the economy is getting out of recession, when oil production is becoming steady and price of oil is going up.
“It will deal a terrible blow to the country and it is my hope that the government won’t allow that to happen. The government should engage them, find out what their issues are and find a way to address them because if they succeed, it might be disastrous for the economy.”
Jacobs also said the effects of such attacks would be greatly felt by manufacturers, who rely on foreign exchange to bring in raw materials and machinery.
Similarly, the Director-General of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Mr. Muda Yusuf, said should the militants carry out their threats, “it will cause a setback for Nigeria.”
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