The Civil Liberties Organization in the South-South has condemned, in the strongest terms possible, the renewed invasion of Yeghe community in Ogoni area of Rivers state by the Nigerian Army and the Police.
It said in a press statement that the invasion took place in the early hours of Sunday September 18, 2016.
In the statement signed by Chinedu Karl Uchegbu (CLO South-South Chair), Styvn Obodoekwe (CLO Director, South-South) and Livingstone Wechie (Deputy Director, Communications/Relations), the group said it got calls from members of Yeghe community on Saturday about suspicions of military attack which they alleged is masterminded by certain known desperate political fellows from Ogoni.
“Just this Sunday morning by 4.am, the Army and other security agencies allegedly invaded the same endangered Yeghe Community again in about twelve trucks of heavily armed soldiers, shooting sporadically for more than two hours, torched two houses belonging to one Mr. Boy Tore and that of his son named Mr. New Tore.
“The Army joint team also reportedly whisked away one Mr. John Sobarikor and his wife Mrs. Glory Sobarikor Gbarizia including one Barikpoa Diie and others whom we fear may have all been killed as we gathered that some are being tortured.
“This report of Army invasion is one too many giving the very recent massacre of more than 34 innocent Ogonis by the same Army few months ago for which purpose the CLO is in Court with the Nigerian Army and the federal Government.
“It was for this same purpose that the CLO petitioned the Senate and the House of Representatives wherein the affected communities had fingered certain desperate politicians from Ogoni as sponsoring the continuous Army invasion of Yeghe community and its neighbours. The National Assembly is yet to conclude its investigations.
“The CLO queries the interest of the Army and certain desperate politicians and asks why is Yeghe and its neighbours marked by the Army for regular attacks and killings? If the eternal invasion is in search for Solomon Ndigbara as they always claim, why not leave the innocent community out of this?
“CLO challenges the Army to search itself in conscience and in truth in the face of the obvious that these bloody invasions are not political.
“We also remind them that you cannot be looking for peace in the Niger Delta while you subject its communities to war after the Presidential Amnesty office unjustifiably suspended stipends of ex-agitators from the Ogoni axis.
“If the Army, DSS and Police think they are above the law and do not end this injustice, we may be forced to involve the International Criminal Court in this matter as this is not the Operation Crocodile Smiles that they flagged off putting lives in jeopardy”, the statement read.