The Ijaw Youth Council, IYC, Friday, said it was behind ex-Niger Delta Militant leader, Government Ekpemupolo, also called Tompolo.
The Ijaw group cautioned ‘laptop fraudsters’ taking on the appearance of aggressors in the district to allow him to sit unbothered.
Leader of the group, Pereotubo Oweilaemi, who put forth this expression yesterday, approached soldiers looking for individuals from the Niger Delta Avengers to quit bugging guiltless riverine inhabitants.
Oweilaemi said, “For the umpteenth time, the Ijaw nation is appealing to the laptop fraudsters masquerading as militants in the region to leave High Chief Government Ekpemupolo alone”.
“They can engage in whatsoever business they so desire for the perpetration of their criminal agenda, but Tompolo’s name should not be dragged in. The Ijaw nation is standing behind him.
“We cannot sacrifice Tompolo this time around unlike the way our forefathers unknowingly sacrificed Maj. Jasper Isaac Adaka Boro to the oppressive Federal Government, which had led to his untimely death in 1968 in the cause of fighting for the survival of the Ijaw nation in Nigeria.
“Tompolo has not done anything bad to be facing the travails he is going through. His only sin we know is because of his resolve to fight for the survival of the oppressed, dejected and criminally marginalised/colonised Niger Delta people in Nigeria.
“The Ijaw nation in particular should be grateful to have a son like him. A threat to Tompolo’s life is a threat to the Ijaw nation,” he declared.
Oweilaemi said, “IYC has been duly informed that soldiers from Operation Delta Safe in the name of looking for NDA are harassing innocent villagers in Warri South West and Burutu Local Government Areas of Delta state.”
“We acknowledged that the military is constitutionally bound to checkmate criminal activities in the creeks or anywhere in Nigeria. However, the discharge of its responsibilities is not without limits. The military must draw a line between discharging its functions and breaching human rights”.
“It is unheard of for the military to be terrorising innocent communities under the guise of looking for Avengers whose whereabouts remain a misery to the ordinary man”.
“The people of Beneth Island in Ogbe-Ijoh Kingdom, Ogulagha community and Gbaramatu Kingdom, to the best of our knowledge did not harbour the so-called Avengers. Disrupting the peace of these innocent communities… is to say the least an unprofessional propaganda.
“If there is any criminal in those communities, let the military get the person arrested, but we cannot accept calling the people in Ogbe-Ijoh, Ogulagha and Gbaramatu Kingdoms as Avengers.
“Do not subject Ijaw people as the sacrificial lamb for the purpose of prosecuting the war against criminals in the Niger Delta”.
“IYC is ready to collaborate with security agencies for the onerous task of securing lives and property in region, but that can only happen if the military adhere to the rules of engagement, he stated.