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MOSOP threatens to petition UN over military , police raid of Ogoniland

By Kelvin Ebiri, Port Harcourt
21 September 2016   |   2:50 am
The Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP) has threatened to petition the United Nations over alleged police and military raid of some Ogoni communities in Rivers State.
Ban Ki-Moon

Ban Ki-Moon

The Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP) has threatened to petition the United Nations over alleged police and military raid of some Ogoni communities in Rivers State.

MOSOP said it was appalled by last Sunday’s raid on Yeghe, an Ogoni community in Gokana Local Government.The Publicity Secretary of the movement, Fegalo Nsuke, said the incessant military invasion of Ogoni communities, particularly Yeghe portrays sinister motives when considered against the backdrop that the area is experiencing significant peace.

Nsuke recalled that in February and March this year, similar raids were carried out on Yeghe and neighboring communities during which over 28 persons were killed, scores maimed, raped and properties wantonly destroyed.

According to him, in the raid carried out on Sunday, two persons including Mr. John Sorbarikor Gbarazia and his wife, Gloria were feared killed.
“MOSOP demands an immediate end to this callous killings and repression through military invasion of our communities. In the face of the present circumstances, we will be constrained to petition relevant authorities, the United Nations, and global human rights community on this continuous violence meted out to our people by the Nigerian military,” Nsuke said.

He explained that MOSOP could not find any justification for the frequent raid and killings of the Ogoni by government forces, and therefore call for a probe into the latest military attack.

According to Nsuke, MOSOP was particularly saddened by the attitude of the Nigerian security personnel who rolled out heavy tanks to nocturnally invade the Yeghe community, leaving her people with pain, injuries and traumatic conditions which eventually lead to death. He said while MOSOP condemns criminality in every form, it maintains that the country is neither in a military state nor in a state of war.To that end, Nsuke said MOSOP expected the military to have deployed civilized methods in dealing with substantiated breaches.

“We demand that the security forces conduct themselves within acceptable standards of human rights, respecting the sanctity of human life and the rights of our people to fair treatment. They should adopt more civilized approaches in addressing social problems that are taking a very dangerous dimension and worsening the state of our already vulnerable population,” he said.

“The continuous harassment, sporadic shooting and night operations in a purely civilian enclave without provocation, along with the effects on our already dehumanized population is no longer acceptable to us. We note that the entire Ogoni community paid dearly for the enthronement of our democracy and we do expect to be respected as a people. If there are any security breaches, we do not expect the criminalisation of an entire population, jeopardizing the security of our people who are currently agonizing under the strain of a polluted environment and harsh economy.”

MOSOP then demanded full-scale investigation into the raid on Yeghe last Sunday, and urged the security forces to make clarifications on the conditions of those arrested including John Gbarazia and his wife who were shot. “We also want clarification on the conditions of Barikpoa Dii, Sorbarikkor Norbaa and Barikui Suanu.”The 2nd amphibious brigade spokesperson, Captain Lazarus Eli, said the raid on Yeghe was a police operation in which the military provided additional security backup.

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