On the occasion of celebrations for Nigeria’s Democracy Day, which commemorates the restoration of democracy in the country, the MOSOP denounced the suffering of indigenous communities of the Niger Delta and reiterated the importance of ensuring equity and social justice to all Nigerian people. Since 1957, the ruthless exploitation of oil in the Ogonis’ ancestral homeland has had catastrophic consequences for their environment, society and livelihood systems, which the government has failed to address.
The Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP) has called for social justice in Nigeria as panacea to the increasing insecurity ravaging the country.
Speaking during the 2019 June 12th Memorial Lecture organized by the Unity House Foundation and Garden City Leadership Initiative at the Presidential Hotel, Port Harcourt, President of MOSOP, Fegalo Nsuke said democracy in Nigeria has not improved the cause of social justice for the oppressed peoples of the Niger Delta.
Nsuke said the case of the Ogoni people in Nigeria reflected the dark side of the country, where oil-rich indigenous communities produced the wealth of the country and have nothing to show for it as they are left to suffer the consequences of oil exploitation.
Nsuke said, although, democracy is still the best option for Nigeria, it will make little or no meaning if it does not promote equity and social justice for the Nigerian people.
According to him, the people of Nigeria have come to understand all that have been kept away from them and that the best way to stem the tide of agitations is to face the reality that Nigeria have to be a better democracy by promoting social justice.
Citing the case of the Ogoni people, Nsuke said Ogoni generated an estimated 185,000 barrels of oil daily and still remains one of the poorest regions of Nigeria. He said the consequences of such neglect and deprivations are agitations.
He further noted that although the agitations of the Ogoni people is non-violent, some other communities are not likely to go the way of non-violence thereby worsening the security problems we face as a country.