“FG using the military carelessly” – Niger Delta leaders call for withdrawal of soldiers in Okuama

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The crisis in Okuama community, Ughelli South Local Government Area of Delta State, has garnered significant attention from various leaders stakeholders in the Niger Delta region.

The situation, triggered by the killing of 17 military personnel and the subsequent military siege on the community, has led to widespread displacement and heightened tensions in the area.

Leaders and influencers from different sectors, including traditional rulers, retired security officers, clerics, and activists, have joined their voices in urging the Federal Government to take decisive steps to address the escalating crisis.

Retired Air Force officer, Wing Commander P.Y. Biakpara, said: “I am a military man and there are rules of engagement. Things start from the police and it is only when the situation goes beyond the police that the army is rarely called upon.

“If there is any small issue, one person will run to the army checkpoint and soldiers will go there, nonsense! That means our army has nothing to do!

“I am not happy about what happened at Okuama and I sympathize with the families of the lost heroes, as well as innocent civilian lives lost in this issue. I’m not happy about the whole thing.

“The government should be well advised that they should not use the military in this wrong way, they are using the military very, very carelessly.

“The military is not made to make peace, and even if they make peace, they will kill people to make that peace.”

The Pere (traditional ruler) of Kabowei Kingdom in Patani Local Government Area, Delta State, HRM (Barr) Shadrach Peremobowei Erebulu, Aduo III, said: “It is a sad incident that we never envisaged in our dear state that has been peaceful.

“To the military, I urge them to employ their tactics in investigating and fishing out these persons. I know the military has a way they go about things, their intelligence. In doing that, let them be wary of attacking or hurting innocent persons because at times like this, you may not know the perpetrators.

“If innocent persons are affected, it turns the whole ball around, so they should not cause more problems in the communities.’’

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