Bayelsa State administrator Paul Obi has declared a state of emergency in this oil rich region in Nigeria following the deaths of three people during protests by militant Ijaw youths, AFP reported today. Police fire shots in the air and used tear gas to disperse the protestors. AFP did not say how many youths were protesting.
Obi imposed a dusk-to-dawn curfew and placed military and police units on alert, the agency said, quoting ‘The Guardian’ newspaper. It said Ijaw youths marched on the government offices after the expiration of their ultimatum to oil companies that they leave the Niger Delta.The youths, who have been demanding a greater share of the nation’s oil wealth for their region, had given the oil companies until December 30 to withdraw form the Ijaw area.
Nigeria earns some US $10 billion annually from oil exports but little of this ends up in the oil producing communities, AFP said.
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