Permit me to begin with this task, go to google search, and type ‘Niger Delta’ automatically google will predict ‘Niger Delta Avengers’, that’s how popular the group have become, they are now SEO friendly.
Many online news portal have created new pages for the group because they see it as a trending topic, well I don’t blame them on this, we in the digital media knows the amount of traffic any news on this group generates.
When news of the agitating militants in the creek camp up, the government initially disregarded it, to them it was a political move by loyalist to former president Jonathan, or perhaps it was an agitation a little ‘Police Action’ can curb. Little did the government knew that these boys in the creek meant business, hence the reason for penning this piece.
Can the government fight down militancy in the region? Or will they negotiate with these militants to bring an end to militancy in the region?
I totally believe that a negotiation with these militants won’t make our government look weak but it’s a step in these right direction, and this is why I think so:
- The Militants Are Agitators Not Terrorist
They exist a strong difference between a group of armed agitators or freedom fighters from a terrorist cell, that why I never supported any move for the government to negotiate with Boko Haram. The militants in the creek are agitators and to a large extent they are fighting against the injustice melted out against their people.
2. They Have The Support Of The Locals
Admit it or not, the indigenous people of Niger Delta are in support of the activities of the militants (after all they claim their agitators is on their behalf). Admit it or not, these locals knows who the militants are, they even know the people behind it, yet you don’t see them ratting them out, why? It’s this simple, they are in support of their activities, and they stand solidly behind them, no wonder little or no Intel is being distributed to the security agencies that are combating the militants.
3. The Militants Adopts Guerilla Warfare Tactics
It’s almost impossible fighting an enemy that adopts the guerilla warfare tactics. During the Vietnam War, this pattern was adopted and it made the Americans suffer huge damage. In guerilla warfare, every negative approach of winning a battle is adopted, ambush, attacking unprepared fighters, attacking while pretending to be civilians and a whole lot of negative combat method, but in all, guerilla combatants never engages in an all-out combat.
The Niger Delta Militants adopts this pattern, so it will be extremely difficult to know who your enemies are, and if you don’t know them, how can you win?
4. They Are Sophisticated
One won’t be far from the truth if you say the militants are professionally trained and they have a structure that works for them. Every of their attack was pre-stated, thoroughly planned and executed. They made it known that there won’t have any military nor civilian casualty in their attacks, and this they have professionally done.
5. It Brings The Government Closer To The People Of Niger Delta
Wrong advisers of the president will tell him that negotiating with this group will make him weak, or that they can crush these agitators. But in sheer honesty, those options have been tried and it failed or it’s failing.
Now is the time to show the people of Niger Delta that the government listens, believe me, this is a step in the right direction. President Yar Adua (God bless his soul) did it, and it didn’t make him any weaker, rather it cemented his name in Nigeria’s history and the history of the Niger Delta people.
Do you agree that the President Buhari led administration should negotiate with the Niger Delta militants?
Let us know what you think in the comment box.
WRITTEN BY: Arinze Esomnofu