Niger Delta militants will take up arms again and throw the country into chaos if President Jonathan is not re-elected for a second term in 2015, former militant leader Mujahid Asari Dokubo has said. Addressing a news conference in Abuja at the weekend, Dokubo, who led an arms struggle against the Federal Government for years in the past, said the peace in the Niger Delta at present is because Jonathan is president and that chaos will return if he is denied re-election.
“The day Goodluck is no longer the President all of us who are on sabbatical will come back. There will be no peace not only in the Niger Delta but everywhere. If they say it is an empty boast let them wait and see,” said Dokubo, who as leader of the Niger Delta Peoples Volunteer Force (NDPVF) coordinated a campaign of violence in the oil producing areas.
Militant activities disrupted oil production in the Niger Delta for years until a Federal Government amnesty programme was instituted in 2009 by then-President Umaru Yar’Adua. Of recent, Nigeria’s oil production is falling again because of large-scale crude theft. Dokubo, who is also former President of the Ijaw Youth Congress (IYC), said the relative peace in the Niger Delta is because Jonathan is president and not because of the amnesty programme, which he said he had rejected because he committed no crime.
He said Jonathan has performed better than previous governments, and that he is holding the post of president for the Niger Delta region which should have an uninterrupted eight years before power would shift to another zone.
Dokubo also said he was opposed to the reported plans by the Senate to introduce a six-year single term for president and preclude Jonathan from running in 2015.