Former president, Goodluck Jonathan has said he is not one of the sponsors of militancy in the Niger Delta region. This is just as the ex-president stated that Movement for the Emancipation of Niger Delta (MEND) is plotting to assassinate him. This disclosure was made following a statement by The Reformed Niger Delta Avengers (RNDA) which said many notable Ijaw and other Niger Delta leaders and elders, including Jonathan were involved in sponsoring the activities of militancy in the Niger Delta region. The former president’s Media Aide, Ikechukwu Eze in a statement on Sunday said the claim made by MEND/RNDA’s Cynthia Whyte should be discarded as Jonathan could never be a sponsor of militancy in the Niger Delta.
The statement reads in parts that: “For the avoidance of doubt, we are fully convinced that such an idiotic claim is too cheap a narrative, a facile contrivance so badly concocted that any discerning mind would easily see through its disingenuous and duplicitous nature. Since it is not in our place to speak for all those named in the obvious fabrication, we are only intervening to the extent that its hidden intent poses a violent threat to the life of former President Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, GCFR, a committed patriot who the Almighty God has given the grace and good health to rededicate his life to the service of humanity, after serving his dear nation as President to the best of his abilities.
“We are also not bothered by this baseless accusation, contented that we are not the only ones conversant with Jonathan’s widely-acknowledged sincere disposition to peace, non-violence and better human community. We, however, seized by the feeling of déjà vu occasioned by the resurrection of one dim character masquerading as ‘Cynthia White’, who had in the past served as the spokesperson for a notorious group that had all along shown its hand to be going after the life of Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan.
“Jonathan was only saved then by the spirited efforts of the combined forces of determined security men, who gallantly repelled the attack. Let us also not forget that members of this same group later invaded and bombed Jonathan’s compound in Otuoke, Bayelsa State, on a night he was scheduled to attend to an important matter in his country home. He was only saved by the grace of God, who in His infinite mercy created intervening factors that prevented Jonathan from sleeping in his country home that night.
“Do we need to remind anybody that the so called Cynthia White is the self declared spokesperson of the Movement for the Emancipation of Niger Delta (MEND), a violent and murderous underground group led by one Henry Orkah, which has not hidden its intention to destroy the former President? The unfortunate event of 1st October 2010 in Abuja at the Eagle Square during the Independence Day celebrations for that year, being presided over by the former President, bears out this conviction.
“It is no secret that following that incident, Orkah, the leader of MEND was arrested, tried, convicted and jailed in South Africa over terrorism charges by the security authorities of that country. He remains in a South African prison till date while his associates in Nigeria are still being held in Kuje prison, Abuja. We, therefore, have no doubt in our mind that MEND, as a group contracted to go after Jonathan with the mind of assassinating him, is yet to abandon this criminal and ignominious craving. It is in this light that we view the purported statement issued by ‘Cynthia White’ as not only a sadistic continuation of this sick desire, but also a futile attempt to instigate the Federal Government to needlessly go after the former President.
“Those who have been following the unsavoury developments in some parts of the country since the last general elections, especially the ones that held in the South South states, would have noticed that the nefarious MEND, their pay masters and other unscrupulous elements in the region, have been striving fruitlessly to exploit the ensuing confusion, by surreptitiously working for the fulfillment of its yet-to-be declared political agenda. It is our considered view that the statement in question is an off-shoot of that ignoble plan; this time plotting to rubbish and torpedo the ongoing peace efforts in the region. While we believe that God Almighty would continue to protect the former President against the evil machinations of these undesirable elements, we wish to also point out that Jonathan is prepared to do anything within the limit of our laws to ensure that he enjoys a well-deserved peaceful post-Presidential life without any hindrance.”