Governor of Niger state, Umar Bago has urged the federal government to extend the payment of 13 percent derivation fund enjoyed by oil-producing states to Niger.
He threatened to shut down the Kainji Dam and other infrastructure such as the hydroelectric power assets in Zungeru and Shiroro that supply power to the Delta region, if the Nigerian government does not approve his demand.
The governor spoke while receiving the federal commissioner of the National Commission for Refugees, Migrants, and Internally Displaced Persons, Tijani Aliyu, in Minna on Monday.
Bago said; “We will take the federal government to the Supreme Court unless the 13 per cent derivation from our land, water, air, grass, and everything given to us is paid. We need 13 per cent derivation for water supplied to the Delta. Our people are ravaged and displaced year in, year out because of the flow of water from the Niger to the Delta.
He also said the federal government “will pay Niger state N1 trillion in the next three months for hydrocarbon exchange, they must. We have provided this country with hydropower for a long time; nobody is compensating us for it.
“Abuja Electricity Distribution Company must pay us, they have consumed from Niger state hydrocarbon exchange, and Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation must pay us. We have woken up, we can never ever tolerate being neglected or abandoned again. The only way we can ensure that the federal government needs us is to shut down the hydro dams unless we are paid.
“We are serious about this. It is not a threat; it is a statement. Every dime that is due to us, we will take it. We will take every kobo that is for Niger state. We are not going to be marginalised again; our waters, our lands, our borders are strengths for us and not weaknesses.
“We demand compensation for our people. Everything, every resource that comes from Niger state, must be compensated. We will not tolerate this anymore. We must be compensated. Our people have done enough for Nigeria.”