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Okuama Killings: Ijaw, Urhobo Nations Condemn Massacre of Innocent Villagers by Nigerian Army

The Ijaw National Congress (INC) has strongly condemned the reported killing of women and children by the Nigerian Army following the assassination of soldiers in Okuama, a community in Delta state. Images and videos circulating online depicted disturbing scenes of bodies strewn across streets and communities.

In response, INC, through its National Publicity Secretary, Ezonebi Oyakemeagbegha, issued a statement urging President Bola Tinubu to intervene and prevent further escalation of the situation. The organization cautioned that unchecked actions by the military could reignite unrest in a region that has been relatively peaceful.

Expressing similar concerns, the Council of Urhobo Traditional Rulers and Urhobo Progress Union have called upon the Delta State Government to establish an Independent Truth Commission. This commission would investigate both the immediate and underlying causes of the Okuama/Okoloba crisis, along with other incidents along the Forcados Rivers, in order to find a lasting solution. Following a four-hour meeting, the executive members of both organizations outlined a seven-point demand, underscoring the need for a thorough examination of the circumstances surrounding the recent violence.

The monarchs emphasized the deep sorrow felt by the Urhobo nation over the tragic events, lamenting the loss of life and the destruction of the Okuama community. They extended condolences to the families affected by the violence, including both the slain soldiers and the innocent civilians who have been displaced or harmed. Affirming their commitment to peace, they stressed the historical harmony between the Urhobo and Ijaw peoples, despite the current challenges.

Furthermore, the Secretary of the Urhobo Renaissance Society, Dr. John Uwa, echoed calls for restraint and urged the military to conduct a formal investigation to apprehend those responsible for the violence.

IMAGE: The Nation

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