20 June 2011
By Williams Ekanem
Contrary to the impression that hostility in the Niger Delta region is over, the situation remains fragile and there is a likely return to full blown insurgency within the next six to eighteen months in the region.
This was part of the summations in the report by the United State Institute of Peace (USIP) made available to BusinessWorld last week in
The report, sponsored by the Centres of Innovation at the USIP, and Stakeholder Democracy Network (SDN) over the past four years in the Niger Delta, has it that the much celebrated amnesty programme only opened a door for stabilization, but did not reduce the long-term potential for violence or deal with root conflict issues, if a “business as usual” approach is taken to interventions.
According to the report, “neither
nor foreign donors are investing enough to end violent conflict in the Niger Delta. While Nigerian officials opt to buy short-term cease-fires, such as the 2009 amnesty process, other governments spend too little in money and manpower to grow local civil society, engage core conflict issues, or adequately understand the region’s problems.” Nigeria
The report regrets that all parties have failed to focus on deeper trends when planning their anti-conflict strategies, and consequence of this, it said, causes them to undervalue the potential costs of on-going violence, as well as the importance of a peaceful Niger Delta to
’s economic development and global energy security. Nigeria