By Simon Ebegbulem
BENIN â€” THE Benin National Congress (BNC) and the Edo Unity League, socio-cultural organisa-tions in Edo State, have vowed to mobilise youths and market women in the state to flush out what it described as criminal elements involved in kidnap-ping of citizens of the state.
In a statement signed by the Secretary-General of the BNC, Mr Osazee Erhiamatoe and his counterpart in the EUL, Mr Elliot Ejuaware, the groups resolved to put an end to what it described as grave threat to Edo hospitality and crimina-lised brigandage which has been a recurring menace in the state.
It noted that the ugly trend had serous tribal connotation as all the victims are Edo indigenes both by birth and residency.
â€œIt is, therefore, an unprovoked attack on our sense of existence and our right to freedom of movement.
â€œIt is also worthy of note that the security apparatuses have shown tremendous willingness to deal with the hostility.
However, their incapacitation as a result of under-equipped facilities as well as the professionalisation of this criminal act has given the defenseless Edo people an air of uncertainty which has made self-help inevitable and indispensable,â€ it read.
The statement added: â€œ We have also resolved to deploy our youths to go all out and fish out these anti-Edo elements wherever they may be and bring to our attention and that of the law enforcement agents conspirators and gang members of this heinous acts.
A situation where people who were hitherto not part of the Niger Delta regionâ€™s development agitations take to kidnapping of Edo people who are not in any way connected to sabotaging Niger Delta struggles is an affront on our collective aspiration and existence; it will henceforth be matched with counter-kidnapping.
â€œWe will fish out these bastards and smoke them out; since a seeming inter-ethnic war is being systemically declared. More worrisome is the fact that these elements are alien to the genuine agitation for true fiscal federalism and development of the Niger Delta region for which the Benin National Congress has been greatly committed toâ€.