Youths on the platform of National Youth Council of Nigeria, NYCN, Rivers State branch, on Tuesday staged a peaceful protest against attacks on oil facilities in the Niger Delta region.
The youths in their hundreds paraded some streets in Port Harcourt, the state capital, expressing their displeasure with the spate of cultism and other criminal activities.
They marched from First Artillery to Azikiwe Road displaying placards bearing different inscriptions.
Speaking with newsmen during the protest, president of NYCN in the state, Mr. Sukubo Sara-Igbe, said the activities of vandals were affecting the economic well being of the region and called on aggrieved youths not to destroy pipelines and other oil installations.
He disclosed that the campaign was necessitated because of the rise in cases of kidnapping and other criminal activities.
Sara-Igbe said, “We are making this protest, so that youths will shun armed robbery, oil theft and embrace peace; so that investors can come and invest in the state and in the region.
“Rivers youths are now ready to protect investors because we don’t want our youths to disturb them.
“Today, the Rivers people are celebrating the company for the jobs it created for over 520 youths. But, we are not happy that youths are involved in destroying critical infrastructures in the region. We kick against vandalism and cultism in the entire Niger Delta region.
“If the Federal Government will release more oil blocks to the Niger Delta people, it will put to rest the continuous agitation in the area.
“We thank the Federal Government for giving a Niger Delta son the opportunity of operating Belema oil. We also thank the governor for creating an enabling environment for the company to operate,” the group’s president added, hailing Belema oil for providing 520 jobs for youths in the state.
The group warned youths to desist from cultism, pipeline vandalism and other activities that could threaten peace in the state.