Abuja - Investigations have revealed that the ongoing negotiations between the federal government and the representatives of various groups in the Niger Delta have almost broken down over the disbursement of N8 billion, Saharareporters reports.
It was learnt that the representatives that a number of “elders” from the Niger Delta area, who have been represented in the talks as “major stakeholders,” demanded N8 billion from the Buhari administration as a condition for continuing with negotiations.
“The elders also demanded that the money should be given directly by the Federal Government to them because they said they don’t trust the governors of the Niger Delta States to handle the funds,” one source said.
Buhari was adamant that he could not honor the elders’ demands according to the source.
He said the president stated that such a payment to a private group would violate the Constitution.
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“The President’s position is that there is no legal mechanism in place that allows him to allocate any sum of money directly to the elder group, bypassing State governments.
The elders have to change the constitution if they want President Muhammadu Buhari to give them money directly,” the source said.
News24 previously reported that Brig.-Gen. Paul Boroh (rtd.), presidential aide on Niger Delta matters and coordinator of amnesty programme, has stated the federal government commenced negotiations with the militants.
He stated that the talks are organizing through the dialogue committee with a view to halting the lasting hostility and bombing of oil pipelines in the region.
According to him, the Nigerian authorities have no plan to bring in more Niger Delta militants into the amnesty programme, comprising the Niger Delta Avengers.
- News 24