Ijaw youths rap military, urge restraint in Foropa, Bayelsa

Posted by News Express | 6 May 2020 | 515 times

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The Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) on Tuesday advised the military to carry out its operations with restraint and avoid molesting innocent people in search of criminals Foropa community in Bayelsa.

The advice is sequel to ongoing military operations on suspected hideouts used by criminals being burnt down by soldiers on the trail of hoodlums.

The IYC said that reports of attack by the military on Foropa, a coastline settlement by the Atlantic coastline in Southern Ijaw Local Government Area when the people were battling with the COVID-19 pandemic was regrettable.

In a statement issued by the Chairman and Secretary of the group, Kennedy Olorogun, Frank Akiefa, respectively, the group frowned at the violence reportedly meted out on innocent members of the settlements.

According to the statement, the military should carry out its operations without infringing on the human rights of law abiding members of the communities.

“The IYC leadership laments the plight and trauma of military invasion on the predominantly law abiding people. These are trying times, there is serious hunger in the land as a result of the global Coronavirus pandemic.

“Fishes in our coastal areas are dying in very large numbers and there is imminent danger of extinction due to suspected pollution of the Atlantic within Ijaw settlement by dumping toxic chemicals by oil firms.

“As if these are not enough, the military is also unprofessionally attacking our communities. There is no justification for the attacks and violence on innocent people.

“The leadership of Foropa community has pledged to cooperate with the military in fishing out suspects to face prosecution; the innocent must be isolated from violent molestation.

“No matter the gravity of offence committed by suspects from Foropa they should be arrested and prosecuted in line with extant laws, the military cannot be persecutor and judge.

“The IYC does not warrant such uncivilized display by the Nigeria military.

“We request putting to an end these menace of steady attack on Ijaw settlements and urge Federal Govt to come to the aide of Foropa people whose houses have been burned down,” IYC stated.

When contacted for comments, sources at the Joint Task Force (JTF) Headquarters in the Niger Delta in Yenagoa the Bayelsa state capital said that only the Director of Defence Media Operations can comment and advised the reporter to contact the Defence Headquarters in Abuja.

Source: News Express

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