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Niger Delta ‘I don’t know militants so I can’t negotiate for them,’ Ajumogobia says

Former minister of state for petroleum, Odein Ajumogobia made the denial via a statement released on Wednesday, June 15, 2016.

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Odein Ajumogobia

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Former Minister of State for Petroleum, Odein Ajumogobia has denied reports that he is on a negotiation team created by the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) to dialogue with the Federal Government on the crisis in the region.

Ajumogobia made the denial via a statement released on Wednesday, June 15, 2016.

It reads:

My attention has been drawn to widespread reports in the media claiming that I have agreed to participate in negotiations with the Federal Government over the issue of attacks against oil installations in the Niger Delta on behalf of some of the alleged perpetrators of these actions or connected persons.

This is not so. I wish to make it absolutely clear that I do not know the alleged perpetrators nor have I offered to serve as their representative in prospective discussions with the Federal Government in any capacity whatsoever.

I was recently contacted by someone who claimed to represent the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND). In that conversation the caller asked if I would be willing to participate in an initiative to find ways to end the attacks on oil installations through dialogue towards restoring peace and stability in the region.

My brief response was that if the Federal Government was genuinely interested in entering into discussions with credible parties who could help to facilitate such a dialogue to halt the actions that were undermining the social and economic stability of the region and the nation I would readily participate. In such an event I would seek to articulate the proper interests of all law abiding Nigerians generally and the ordinary people of the Niger Delta States, in particular.

I am not affiliated to or the official or legal representative of any particular group and I am certainly not an advocate of the unstated demands or actions of any insurgent organisations.

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