NDLF CALLS OFF CEASEFIRE, VOWS TO RESUME ATTACK
The Niger Delta Liberation Force (NDLF) has called off its ceasefire, declaring that it would resume attacks on oil facilities in the Niger Delta region soon.
But the Joint Military Task Force (JTF) in a swift reaction had dismissed the NDLF's threat, warning that it would not allow any group of individuals to threaten the security of the country.
NDLF, through its spokesman, Mark Anthony, said the group was going to resume hostilities because the Federal Government had refused to convene a post- amnesty conference to address the grey areas of the exercise.
The group said its ceasefire was at the instance of the President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Ayo Oritsejafor, adding that the government frustrated genuine reconciliation initiated by CAN. It therefore disclosed that as from the moment it called off its ceasefire, bombs planted on oil facilities would be detonated, adding that JTF soldiers should immediately leave NDLF camps as continued occupation of the camps would a risk to the soldiers.
NDLF said President Goodluck Jonathan could avert the attack on oil facilities if he speeds up negotiation with the militant group. The statement read in parts: 'We want to call-off our declaration for temporal cease fire in next seven days, starting from this day of publication and continue massive attack on oil facilities in Niger Delta following Federal Government recalcitrant approach to our temporal cease fire agreement in Niger Delta by refusing to address the fundamental problems of the region by convening a post-amnesty conference.
'NDLF time-bombs are still hanging on oil pipelines, oil well heads, oil jackets and other flow stations which could be detonated through DCP/GPRS remote bombing operation. This time, we will touch both the NNPC major distribution export pipeline in the high sea with our high capacity time-bombs that have been planted on it for barely two months. Our resolve to resume hostility is a fallout of genuine peace deal on the part of Federal Government which the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) leadership and other well meaning Nigerians represented NDLF for peace negotiation between our organization and Federal Government. By this resumption of fresh attack, we warn soldiers of JTF to vacate our camps which we abandoned for them as our attack shall not spare both soldiers who proved stubborn by occupying our territories.'
However, the media coordinator of the JTF, Lt. Col. Timothy Antigha in an interview with Daily Sun said the threats of violence by the NDLF showed that it had never been involved in the genuine struggle of the Niger Delta people. Antigha, who said there was a similar threat from the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) over the appointment of a replacement for Mr. Ndutimi Alaibe as special adviser to the president, noted that it wasnow obvious to Nigerians that criminals who were just masquerading as freedom fighters were behind the groups.
According to him genuine freedom fighters who had made their points about the situation in the Niger Delta had already dropped their weapons and working hand in hand with the Federal Government to see that development comes to the region. Anthigha said the JTF would not relent in its efforts to continue to preach peace to those who still believe violence was what would bring development to the Niger Delta.