The Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP), alarmed at the deteriorating state of politically motivated violence across Rivers State, has urged government to take immediate and visible steps to end the trend rather than being aloof as it is presently.
The call came via a statement issued in Port Harcourt by the organisation on Thursday, 1Dth January, 2015.
In the statement signed by Bari-ara Kpalap, Media/Public Affairs Advisor to the MOSOP President, “It is our position that the escalating spate of violence in the state, which has spread beyond the state capital, Port Harcourt, is the direct and regrettable consequence of the failure of security operatives to act with necessary intelligence gathering and rise above perceived partisanship. “The attitude of government and its security outfits demonstrably strengthen suspicion that they may have been compromised or deliberately ignored the worrisome situation because it seemingly favoured their political interests.
“Two years ago, MOSOP warned of dire consequences should the security situation in the state failed to be put in check yet nothing happened. MOSOP believes that if any positive measure was emplaced since 2013, citizens would not have resorted to self-help, which has increased insecurity in Rivers State.
“The disturbances, it is common knowledge, are influenced by the do-or-die tendencies of political actors who have disappointedly failed to imbibe civilize standards of electioneering occasioning intolerance and acrimony. “This ugly approach amplifies the fact that electoral victory in Nigeria means economic power and influence hence the fierce supremacy battle.
MOSOP thus called on politicians and their supporters to eschew violence and pursue their political interests with decorum and civility.
“Confirmed reports today from Eeken village in Babbe Kingdom of Khana Local Government Area of Ogoni, indicated that the village suffered devastating violence occasioning deaths, arson and displacement of victims. The village is reportedly deserted. The incident was reported to have occurred when two rival cult gangs, Dewell and Debam believed to besponsored by rival political interests in the area clashed over control of the area, which would translate into pecuniary benefits.
“Also, the villages of Kporghor and Ekporo in Tai and Eleme Local Government Areas respectively have been sacked by armed attackers from Okirika forcing the villagers into internal refugees. Similarly, the natives suffered loss of lives and properties. Unfortunately, government and its security agencies have continued to ignore their plight. We are aware that the ugly developments have been reported to the government and her security apparatus without any tangible outcome.
“MOSOP is deeply concerned that government at all levels particularly the federal government seems to have compromised its traditional role of provision of security to all its citizens because some defined interest appears to be at stake. We have observed albeit painfully, that anytime some powerful political forces occupy political positions of influence at the state or national level, neighbouring onshore communities especially Ogoni experience incessant attacks without any corresponding security intervention by government.
We therefore urge the federal government to wake up from its slumber and intervene in this matter now. The deteriorating situation of the victims is such that should not be allowed to continue any further”.