The CDC condemns the killing of soldiers of the 181 Amphibious Battalion in Delta State.

The communal incident that occurred between the Okuama and Okoloba communities in Bomadi Local Government Area, resulting in the killing of soldiers from the 181 Amphibious Battalion of the Nigerian Army, is not acceptable.

There is no justification for this type of barbaric behavior against officers and men of the security forces. The leadership of the Community Development Committees of Niger Delta Oil and Gas Producing Areas (CDC) condemns this incident with the strongest words we can find. We cannot allow this ugly incident to continue to happen in our communities. The region should not become a hotbed of insecurity. We have enjoyed relative peace, and we urge everyone to continue to provide an atmosphere of peace, tranquility and togetherness in our communities. We take pride in the Niger Delta region as the most peaceful in the country, and we urge it to remain so.

Peacekeepers cannot become targets when trying to maintain peace and provide security for lives and property. The culprits must be brought to justice. Certainly, this is the act of criminal elements taking refuge in these communities; therefore, the leadership in these communities must be held accountable until the actors are found.

We appeal to President Bola Tinubu and the military high command to restrain themselves from any form of reprisal attack on the communities. Doing so would only compound the already dire situation, and it will only be the innocent ones that will suffer from such reprisal attacks. No one kills its military personnel and goes scot-free without consequences. This incessant attack and killing of our security forces must stop.

We shouldn’t forget so soon that a similar incident happened in the Odi Community, which led to the military’s attack on the community as ordered by former President Olusegun Obasanjo, when twelve police officers were gruesomely killed. The Odi community has not fully recovered since that incident, which should be a lesson learned the hard way.

Furthermore, we urge communities to always find a middle ground in resolving land disputes rather than taking the law into their own hands, thereby encouraging fertile grounds for criminal elements to capitalize and cause havoc.

Going further, we commiserate with the families of the fallen soldiers and the Army’s high command for this painful loss of its officers and men.

Joseph Ambakederimo, Chairman, CDC Board of Trustees. March 15, 2024.

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