NIGERIAN Former President Dr. Goodluck Jonathan on Wednesday stated that his administration took the decision to convene a national conference in Nigeria’s interest.
Calling on the current administration of President Muhammadu Buhari to implement recommendations of the conference, the ex-President noted that decisions taken at the conference came from Nigerians from various parts of the country.
Jonathan spoke on Wednesday during the Rivers State Golden Jubilee Lecture and Documentary on the state held in Port Harcourt.
He explained that he resolved to organise the national conference when The Patriots led by Prof. Ben Nwabueze and others called for such a gathering, adding that The Patriots had insisted that a national conference was the way forward for Nigeria.
“I insisted on the national conference after Prof. Ben Nwabueze led The Patriots to demand a national conference to address those areas regarding our growth. Every decision taken at the national conference was by consensus.
“If the government implements the recommendations, some of the things agitating our minds will be addressed,” the former President stressed.
He berated council chairmen, who he said, were in the habit of receiving allocations without using the funds to develop the community.
The former President lamented that though huge funds had come into the Niger Delta through interventionist agencies, not much had been achieved in terms of project execution due to the issue of tenure and the lifespan of the office holders.
Explaining that states had utilised the 13 per cent derivation that come to the oil-rich region, Jonathan said, “The interventionist agencies leave behind uncompleted projects. The 13 per cent that come to the states, I have seen better utilisation of that money.”