Published On: Thu, Jan 2nd, 2014

Group Raises Alarm over Militarisation of Urhoboland, Demands Withdrawal of JTF

LAGOS JUANUARY 2ND (URHOBOTODAY)—THE Urhobo Nationalists Movement, UNM, has decried what it alleged to be the heavy militarisation of Urhobo nation by security agents.
National Chairman of UNM, Mr Mumakai Unagha, who spoke on the development, said that the call for the withdrawal of the security agents had become necessary, owing to “pressure on us by well meaning Urhobo youths, women and traditional rulers.

“I am raising alarm that the entire Urhobo nation is under siege. It is sad to note that the Urhobo nation has been heavily militarised with the presence of military check points across the length and breadth of the area. It has become very difficult to drive into Warri or come out due to the various military check points. Vehicles plying roads in the area suffer untold hardship as if Urhoboland is a battle ground. The presence of these check points in the area portrays Urhoboland as prone to violence, a situation which is cable of scaring foreign investors.
“We wish to state here that we are not at war with anybody, neither are our neighbours. In the riverrine areas, where bunkering is going on at will, there is no such security presence as it is in Urhobo- land. The various security posts have never apprehended any criminals or kidnappers any day any time, rather than to subject the people to untold harassment and economic exploitation. The heavy presence of the security in the area is also seen as a deliberate attempt to weaken our people.”
Calling for the withdrawal of troops from Kokori in Ethiope East Local Government Area of the state, he said: “Let me also speak briefly on the situation in Kokori community. The human right violation by the Joint Task Force, JTF, is regrettable. Since November 2013, Kokori people cannot go about their normal businesses or means of livelihood. There is possible humanitarian crisis in Kokori.”
Source: Vanguard

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