Thursday, 15 September 2016

Niger Delta ceasefire threatened

A ceasefire in Nigeria’s Niger Delta is
in danger of being derailed by anger at
the military over the death of an
elderly local leader.

Last week, Chief Thomas Ekpemupolo,
the father of a fugitive former militant
leader died.
The octogenarian fell while fleeing an
army raid on his home town in May
and injured his leg which had to be
amputated two months later, a
spokesman for his son said.
Mourners including community chiefs,
politicians and villagers accused troops
of harassing people in the fishing
communities dotted along the region’s
waterways.
A Niger Delta Avengers spokesman
reportedly said the military was
“harassing poor people of the Niger
Delta”, something the military denies
saying troops are merely searching for
militants and criminals.
Militants launched a wave of attacks at
the beginning of the year to demand a
greater share of oil revenues for the
poverty stricken region which produces
most of Nigeria’s crude.
Sources say the fugitive former militant
leader has links to those responsible
for the attacks, which began shortly
after corruption charges were brought
against him.
He has denied any involvement.