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Published On: Mon, Oct 7th, 2013

Kokori Community Leader Raises Alarm over ‘Military Invasion’, Threatens to Drag Uduaghan to World Court

Kokori town under military siege

LAGOS OCTOBER 7TH (URHOBOTODAY)-The South – South Community/Urhobo Progress Union Public Relations Officer (PRO) leader of Kokori Community, Ghana, Mr. David Ukueku, has decried in strong terms what he termed a “military invasion” by men of the Nigerian Army on the peaceful and serene community of Kokori in Ethiope East Local Government Area of Delta State under the guise of searching for associates of alleged kidnap kingpin, Mr. Kelvin Oniarah.
In a statement, Ukueku, an indigene of the community said, “After careful consideration of the security situation my ancestral home, I wish to call on all stakeholders within and outside the community including HRM Ogurime-Rime, Ukori I the Ovie of Agbon, the leader of the Urhobo Progress Union, Delta State Governor, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan and the President of Nigeria, President Goodluck Jonathan to apply their leadership positions to resolve the crisis trailing the community.“
He noted that there had been gross human rights abuses, violation of rules of engagement, extortion, unlawful detention, desecration of cultural sites, arrogant disregard for the right to association, which he described as indications of failure of intelligence in fishing out the criminals.
He warned that in the event of manifest violation of rights to life, his community would not hesitate to drag the Uduaghan-led Government of the State to the International Court of Justice.
“Why would the sin of a single individual be [visited] on an entire community?” he asked. “What crimes have the people of Kokori committed to warrant this fate that has [befallen] them? My aged parents now reside in the bush for crimes they know nothing about.”
He regretted that the human, social and economic lives in the community have been totally grounded. “Internally displaced persons are roaming nearby forests in search of hope and safety on account of the dastardly fatal harassment by unruly soldiers. We have also noticed that the soldiers are mostly of the northern ethnic extraction, thereby raising questions that border political hatred for Niger Deltans.
“Innocent school children, teachers, trader and farmers have fled for their dear lives, abandoning their farm product and other activities in the community for fear of the unknown.”
Ukueku pointed out that the land which is now so tortured is one of the highest oil producing communities in Delta State, and that it has a reputation for peace, and wondered why the revenue from their land is being used to finance the terrorizing of its indigenes.
Pledging that that the Kokoris do not support criminal activity, he urged the authorities to call to order the military personnel operating in their community. He also urged the immediate release of the innocent people that have been arrested, and the trial of those arrested for criminal activity, stressing that delay is denial and a violation of the human right laws of which Nigeria is a signatory.
Source: Saharareporters

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