Less than four weeks to the February 16 presidential poll, the Coalition of Niger Delta Agitators, the umbrella body of militant groups in the Niger Delta, has vowed to resist any attempt to foist President Muhammadu Buhari on Nigeria, declaring that the people of the region will not support Buhari’s re-election bid.
The militant groups warned that the 2019 general election would be bloody should anybody or security agents attempt to rig the polls in the Niger Delta region.
Subsequently, militant groups in the region have perfected plans to deploy their men in polling units across the South-South geopolitical zones.
The coalition, CNDA , comprises Niger Delta Avengers, Niger Delta Volunteers, Bakassi Strike Force and Niger Delta Warriors. Others are Niger Delta Peoples Fighters, Bakassi Freedom Fighters, Niger Delta Movement for Justice and Niger Delta Fighters Network.
The Convener of the coalition group, John Duku, said, “We have sensitised our members and affiliates on how and who to vote, come February 16, 2019. I also want to assure you that our men would be on the ground in all the polling units across the Niger Delta region.
“If we notice any attempt to rig election by anyone, including the security agents, it shall be bloody. Let people vote (according to) their conscience and let the vote of the people count.’’
The coalition further said, “We want to assure you that President Buhari will not return in 2019 except INEC compromises election results. Buhari has neglected the Niger Delta people to the extent that we would have reacted in a very negative way if not for our elders and leaders who continuously calmed us down.
“Our brother, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, accepted defeat and handed over to Buhari; I implore Buhari to toe the path of honour and do same.”
Also, the Pan-Niger Delta Forum, a group headed by Chief Edwin Clarke, declared that it had begun an alliance with other regions on the need to ensure that only presidential candidates, who are in support of restructuring, would get the people’s votes.
PANDEF Secretary General, Dr. Alfred Mulade, told Saturday PUNCH in a telephone interview on Thursday that since President Buhari was not in support of restructuring, he would not enjoy the votes of the Niger Delta people.
Meanwhile, President Buhari and Atiku had reportedly split the Niger Delta militants, causing them to speak in discordant tunes over who the people of the region should support in next month’s presidential election.