The clamour by some legislators to change the order for payment of the 13 percent derivative to oil-producing communities is generating conversation in some quarters.
The loud neglect, social and environmental injustice experienced by oil-producing communities in the Niger Delta is worrisome, suspected aimed at distorting sustainable peace in the region.
Speaking to newsmen in Yenagoa Dr. Felix Tuodolo the pioneer president of the Ijaw Youth Council noted that the goose that lay the golden eggs of Nigeria economy deserves better, yet, lack and poverty speak so loud for the deaf to hear; even as their benefit for the natural gift from creation is shared by the state.
He further expressed that the 1999 constitution provides for at least 13% derivation which is to say it can only be reviewed upwards. However, Tuodolo stressed that the position of the Niger Delta people has always been 100% resource control and that has not changed.
However, the first President of the Ijaw Youth Council lifts the lid on the effects of direct payment of thirteen percent derivation to host communities as proposed in the green chambers. It is not out of place for communities to manage what is derived beneath their soil as they are at direct risk to its devastating effects.
If the bill seeking to amend the 1999 Constitution to allow for direct payment of the thirteen percent derivative to oil-producing communities is passed into law, the communities will not need an intermediary when being paid through the development commission.
It will be hoped that the greed of the community leaders will not then become another huge wall separating the people from the dividends of having such natural resources on their land.
On the other hand, Tuodolo also condemned the plot by some Northern lawmakers seeking to scrap the entirety of the 13%
Having spelled out the disadvantageous position of southern representatives in terms of numbers in the Green Chambers, Dr. Felix admonishes them to firm up to resist this temptation that is bound to plunge the peaceful Niger Delta into chaos, he warns
It is sad to say all other minerals that are explored in other parts of the country or managed by them and ours have to be debated for he added.
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