MEND backs US indictment of Onyema, warns of possible attacks on Air Peace

Posted by Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa | 27 November 2019 | 2,291 times

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•Air Peace boss, Allen Onyema

The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND), a frontline militant group in the Niger Delta region, has backed the United States over its indictment of Air Peace Chairman/CEO Mr Allen Onyema on fraud charges.

The group, known for its 2010 Independence Day twin terror bombings in Abuja, ominously warned that Air Peace and Onyema’s assets have become “legitimate targets for attack”.

MEND, in statement by its spokesman, Jomo Gbomo, stated that the report of the investigation of United States officials has vindicated militant commanders who had raised eyebrows over padded list of militants from the region and the use of funds meant for the Niger Delta amnesty programme under the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan for personal use by the drivers of the programme.

The group, which insisted that the 30,000 figure for the amnesty programme was grossly exaggerated, said that the “ninety-nine percent of the beneficiaries from the padded training programs had nothing to do with militancy.”

MEND decried the short-changing of what it called authentic freedom fighters of the region, and slammed the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for not investigating Onyema until the indictment by the United States Department of Justice.

According to the militant group, several people in the National Assembly and militant commanders are aware of that the militants that took part in their struggle are not more than 2,000, but have chosen instead to keep quiet.

The statement reads in part:

“The administration of Goodluck Jonathan, aware of the fraud, was more interested in giving the semblance of peace in the Niger Delta rather than addressing the root issues for which we took up arms. Issues in the mutilated constitution and the need for dialogue before disarmament were completely ignored. Authentic freedom fighters like the Okah brothers, Henry and Charles, who insisted on the right steps to be taken and who opposed the glaring amnesty fraud, were labelled uncooperative, framed on trumped up charges and jailed. MEND carried out the October 1, 2010 Independence Day twin bombings in Abuja in protest of the amnesty fraud which Goodluck Jonathan was comfortable with as long as it guaranteed his presidency. [Air] Peace Airlines and every known asset belonging to Allen Onyema, and the fixed assets of every known person involved in duping the Niger Delta region through the amnesty fraud, have become legitimate targets for attack.”  (Daily Sun)

Source: News Express

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