Friday, May 20

New militant groups are criminal, don’t dialogue with them – Ex-agitator warns FG

New militant groups are criminal, don’t dialogue with them – Ex-agitator warns FG

The National President, National Coalition of Niger Delta Ex-Agitators, NCNDE-A, Israel Akpodoro has cautioned the Federal Government against engaging in any dialogue with resurgent militant groups like the Niger Delta Avengers and Red Egbesu Water Lions.

The former militant, who spoke yesterday in Abuja, said any effort to dialogue with the resurgent militant groups will upsurge others.

He noted that rather than advise the Federal Government to dialogue with the militants, elder statesman, Chief Edwin Clark should make it a responsibility to persuade the militants to lay down their arms, adding that Clark should justify his advice by producing ‎Government Ekpemupolo, alias Tompolo, who had failed to honour several summons by the Federal Government.

Akpodoro claimed that the resurgent agitators were drawn from the league of ex-militants, who were directly under the then leadership of Tompolo.

He said, “‎The neo militant groups were directly under the command of accused Government Ekpemupolo, a.k.a. Tompolo, so those calling for dialogue should produce him to the FG before having the moral rectitude to call for dialogue.

“Acting like father to economic saboteurs and forming protective ring around criminals in the region won’t do us any good at this critical period of our nationhood. The call by Chief E.K.Clark, to say the least came as a rude shock and unbecoming of a man who would always want criminals of Ijaw extraction protected in the name of calls for dialogue.

“Nigerians would want to know from Chief Clark who are the avengers? Who are the sponsors and what are they avenging at this critical period in our nationhood?

“Hiding under the cloak of dialogue to part criminals on the back by giving them amnesty is a dubious thing to ask for. How many times have youth in Cross River, Akwa Ibom, Imo State…blown up pipelines to stampede federal government into granting them amnesty? The FG should dialogue, the army should go all out for these crooks who festers on cheap and free money.”

Describing the new agitators who have been attacking pipelines as criminals and evil doers bent on fomenting trouble and stampeding the government into bankrolling amnesty programme, the ex-militant leader insisted that the call for dialogue by some Ijaw leaders is a ploy to arm-twist the Federal Government.

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