9 January 2017
The Ijaw Youth Council (IYC), an umbrella body for all Ijaw youths on Sunday condemned recent arrest of ex-Niger Delta agitators warning that the situation if not quickly checked will lead to chaos in the region.
IYC in a statement made in Warri and signed by its Spokesman, Barrister Eric Omare, called for the immediate release of Bounanawei Smith and other Ijaws in detention such as Aboy Muturu, Ezekiel Daniel, Victor Odogu, Kalami Saturday Inakemeduo and others.
It states that the Federal Government is inciting crisis in the region by the continued invasion, arrest and detention of Niger Deltans especially ex-agitators without any justifiable reason.
IYC further stressed that Nigerians and the international community should hold President Buhari responsible for a complete breakdown of law and order in the region as a result of what they called the thoughtless and illegal actions of military officers under Buhari’s command.
The IYC warned the display of force by the military carries grave implications for peace and security in the Niger Delta region.
The statement reads: “The latest of such invasion and arrest is the commando style arrest of ex-agitator, Bounanawei Smith (alias King of the Forest) in the late hours of Saturday, the 7th of January, 2017 in Warri, Delta State.
“Mr. Bounanawei was arrested while hosting some Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) members in his guest house at Esiso Estate, Warri by a combined team of military officers.”