By Emma Amaize
WARRIâ€”EX-MILITANT leader, High Chief Government Ekpemupolo, alias Tompolo, has turned down a request by a United States envoy to meet with him in Warri, Delta State, on grounds that the purpose of the visit was shrouded in secrecy.
The issue of the visit of some foreign envoys to the state, purportedly to discuss matters concerning amnesty with ex-militants raised dust in security circles within and outside the region.
Vanguard learnt that Tompolo was inundated with calls by some top government officials and security chiefs,Â seeking to know the purpose of the meeting and why it was holding at such a critical time.
A source close to him, who confirmed that Tompolo cancelled the meeting, said â€œthe meeting was not his idea. A Niger-Delta activist called him to inform that a United States envoy will visit the state and would like to meet with him on Tuesday or Thursday and Tompolo chose Thursday.
â€œWe asked for the purpose of the visit but it was not clearly explained to us. However, the information was relayed to Tompolo and because of the activist involved, he assented to it. As I said earlier, we are surprised that the meeting, which was presented as a private meeting, has been made to look like itâ€™s a public meeting that is sought by Tompolo and that ex-militant leaders have been invited to possibly chart a new course with foreign envoys.
â€œThis is not the impression they gave us earlier about the meeting, which was to hold at a privately-owned hotel in Warri. The meeting has generated a lot of controversy and we donâ€™t know what the agenda of certain persons are for the meeting.
â€œSo, Tompolo has said he is not prepared to be part of such a meeting anymore and we have sent a message to that effect to the activist.â€