Chief Edwin Clark, the leader of the Pan Niger Delta Forum and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Ijaw National Congress, criticized former President Olusegun Obasanjo for what he called a “disappointing display of hostility” against the people of Nigeria’s oil-producing states.
The elder statesman was reacting to the former President’s recent outburst in Abuja, in which he assaulted the INC’s National Secretary, Ebipamowei Wodu, at a peace and security meeting sponsored by the Global Peace Foundation and Vision Africa.
A viral video emerged from the forum, titled “Inclusive security dialogue: Unbundling barriers, a strategic meeting for key influencers,” in which Obasanjo confronted Wodu for claiming that the Ijaw were treated as second-class citizens in Nigeria despite producing the oil and gas resources that had sustained the country.
Clark accused Obasanjo of double standards in the country’s resource control in an open letter to him on Wednesday titled, ‘My disappointment over your unprovoked outburst against the people of the Niger Delta region.’
While Obasanjo talks tough and argues that riches discovered in any state belong to the entire country, he has remained silent on the gold reserve in Zamfara State, according to Clark.
Clark also noted that the old Western Region under Chief Obafemi Awolowo was able to make the money that allowed it to “develop far ahead of the then Eastern Region” thanks to the 1960 Constitution’s principle of derivation, which allowed states ample opportunity to benefit from their local natural resources.