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Military invaded Bayelsa community, killed 40 people – IYC alleges

As a fallout of recent killing of military personnel in Okuama Community, Delta State, the Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) has accused the military of invading Igbomotoru 2 in Bomo-Ibe Clan of Bayelsa State in the early hours of Sunday 17th March, 2024, killing 40 people.

While condemning the recent killing of military personnel, the council maintained that Okuama is not also a community in Bayelsa State.

The President of IYC, Dr. Alaye Theophilus, in a statement issued Wednesday, emphasised that the killing of the military personnel did not happen in an Ijaw land and has nothing to do with the Ijaw nation.

It added that the council has also set up an investigation and fact-finding team which is open to supporting the military and other security agencies to get to the root cause of the matter, and possibly bring the killers to face the law.

The council pleaded that while fishing out the killers, that the whole community should not be destroyed because of the action of a few individuals.

It said: “We as a council condemn in its totality the killing of military personnel on official peacekeeping assignment at Okuama Community in Delta State.

“This incident is devilish and inhuman and therefore, no sane minded person can support such an act in any guise.”

The council said as the largest ethnic block in the Niger Delta region, it was concerned about the stability and business-friendly environment of the oil rich region, stressing that “whatever that happens in any part of the region is of serious concern to us.”

It said as a people, what they had experienced over time “is that when an individual does something bad to military men operating in the region, reprisal from the military is always against the entire community.”

The council further noted that: “As we speak, the fears of our people have shown up again as the said Okuama Community has been completely burnt down and all the occupants made homeless, and are now refugees in neighbouring communities.

“We will also draw your attention to the onslaught going on in one of our Ijaw communities in Bayelsa State, Igbomotoru 2 in Bomo-Ibe Clan where the Nigeria military evaded the community at early hours of Sunday 17th March, 2024.

“They opened fire on innocent men, women and children. They killed over 40 people and still counting, without any form of provocation.

“As a council, we condemn what the military is doing in Igbomotoru 2 community.

“What is happening in this community is purely a humanitarian crisis. As we speak, they have held every member of the community hostage as there is no entry or exit to the community. People are now starving to death.”

The council called on the President Bola Tinubu and the Chief of Defence Staff to call the military to order.

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