WARRI—IJAW elders in Delta state, the day past, stated it became impracticable for them to hand over the former general Officer Commanding, GOC, of the motion for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta, MEND, authorities Ekpemupolo, alias Tompolo, to security companies due to the fact they neither have the power to achieve this nor recognise his (Tompolo) whereabouts presently.
they also said that they do not have any facts that Tompolo became worried in the three-day bombing of crude oil and gas pipelines within the nation, at the same time as many see the economic and economic Crimes commission, EFCC’s case towards him as a shape of persecution.
The Federal government, remaining weekend, requested Ijaw groups at hand over suspects involved in the bombing, supposed to be hiding in their areas, to safety groups, whilst the Joint task pressure, JTF, had in advance threatened to hold network leaders chargeable for further acts of pipeline vandalism in their groups.
Chairman, Ijaw (Izon) Okosu –Otu (Ijaw Council of Elders), Delta state, chief naked Etolor, stated, “it’s miles unfair for the Federal authorities to ask Ijaw groups to handover suspects that carried out the bombing because we do no longer know them. in addition, I do not see how anyone expects us to handover Tompolo to safety organizations due to the fact we do no longer have the electricity to do that, except they need to humiliate us.”
every other Ijaw chief in Gbaramatu Kkingdom, chief Godspower Gbenekame, who re-echoed Etolor’s function, said it became impossible for them to handover Tompolo to the authorities.
some Niger Delta and Ijaw young people organizations, which include the Niger Delta protection Watch Organszation of Nigeria, NWSON and Ijaw people’s development Initiative, IPDI, threw their weight in the back of the elders, saying that the know-how of many Ijaw human beings was that the authorities was persecuting Tompolo due to the fact he refused to enroll in the All Progressives Congress, APC.
but, government Director of Centre for the inclined and Underprivileged, CENTREP, Warri, Delta country, Mr. Oghenjabor Ikimi, stated there has been not anything incorrect inside the residents of the affected areas and ex-militants giving useful information to protection agencies to unmask the culprits.
We don’t realize the bombers —chief Etolor
chief Etolor toldVanguard: “it is unfortunate that the Presidency wants to deal with the matter from this perspective. Which of the Northern elders did they inform to supply the Boko Haram leaders that are bombing in their areas. So, why are they telling us to handover those who bombed pipelines here?
“if they recognise the individual that did it and ask us to help produce the man or woman and we see him, we are able to help with information if we’ve got any. How can every person say Ijaw leaders must handover suspects? We do no longer understand who did it.
“It isn’t proper. although they tell us the man or woman, we do now not have arms to arrest absolutely everyone. What they are doing is to make us now not to believe on this authorities. What strength will we have over armed militants? we are able to simplest communicate to them as elders, no longer arrest them with weapons.
“i’m now not helping illegal activity. In truth, all people amongst us, the Ijaw elders, can be a victim anytime. it’s far difficult for us to supply Tompolo. in the event that they can not see him with all their intelligence, where do they count on us to peer him? i’ve now not even visible Tompolo myself for a long time.”
On his part, leader Gbenekame stated, “how will you say we should hand over Tompolo to the EFCC, are we safety marketers? If he had dealings with EFCC, they should arrest him. Why are they calling Gbaramatu elders?
“What I realize is that Tompolo made many enemies while he worked for the Federal government to shield the pipelines. He burnt unlawful refineries, razed boats and these people are not glad. He has been a associate to the authorities all this while, this is why we called for a political option to the problem.”
in the meantime, Niger Delta Secuity Watch corporation of Nigeria, NSWON and Ijaw humans’s improvement Initiative, IPDI, in a joint declaration via their leaders, Dickson Bekederemo and Austin Ozobo, said: “The human beings of Niger Delta and the ljaw especially aren’t at war with President Muhammadu Buhari’s management. however, the ljaw will never sacrifice their bravest to fulfill the hunt for neo-colonialism. while the instant comes, we shall stand with Tompolo.
“We consider that what the Federal government desires to do is a repeat of what the Russians did to Poland at some point of world struggle II, kill the bravest of their braves, the relaxation is records. We desire to tell President Buhari that inside the hearts and minds of every Niger Deltan lies an embryonic Tompolo ready to hatch.
“We call on President Buhari not to be deceived by using a few pipelines surveillance settlement seekers. there was Judea, yet Christ resurrected from the lifeless. There had been traitors, yet Allah covered Prophet Mohammed inside the cave with a cob net while humans led his enemies to capture him.
“it could interest you to recognize that Tompolo is a robust member of Peoples Democratic celebration, PDP, even in defeat. unlike a few elements of the party from our area which might be bread and butter participants. Tompolo alleged that the APC- led government persuaded him to decamp to its fold. The birthday celebration till date, did now not refute his assertion.
“abruptly, the EFCC froze the bank account of global West Vessels restrained. The management of the company initiated an movement in opposition to EFCC in court. The company bluntly refused to file a defence, most effective for the organization to record prices towards him in another Federal excessive courtroom.
“The question we can like to ask is: Is Tompolo the chief executive or the handling Director of world West Vessels restricted? Assuming, for the reason of argument, that international Vessels limited devoted economic crime, is Tompolo the adjust ego of the business enterprise? The EFCC invitation and subsequent harassment and persecution of Tompolo goes beyond what meets the attention.”
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