By Simeon Ndaji
The Warri National Council yesterday condemned the mayhem unleashed on Itsekiri communities by rampaging Ijaw youths,and called on the Delta State and the Federal Government to put a stop to the crisis.
Chairman of the Council, Chief Brown Mene in a statement yesterday, said, “We only want and demand that our rights to exist along with others on equal terms be not abused or relegated… Our legitimate desire is to live peacefully and in harmony with all our neighbours in Nigeria.”
According to Mene, ‘’the group of heavily armed Ijaw youths on July2, 2013, invaded Itsekiri communities including ,Udo, Ajamita and Gbokoda along the Olero Creek that flows into the Benin River and extends to Ijaw communities of Opuama and Tsekelewu among others.
‘’The attack on the peaceful Itsekiri communities where houses were burnt, lives and properties indiscriminately destroyed is unprecedented and a brazen act of terror by Ijaw youths whose grievances stemmed from the fact that they want to produce the next Chairman of the Warri North Local Government which they share with the Itsekiri people —who they never had any previous quarrel or dispute over anything.’’
Meanwhile, eminent personalities and opinion leaders have continued to condemn the mayhem. Among them is the Vice-Chairman of the Delta State Waterways Security Council, DWSC, Chief Boro Opudu who said :”All hands are on deck to fish out the culprits. The Ijaw and Itsekiri people have no quarrel in the state. I condemn the action and we are working to ensure that the matter does not degenerate into another Ijaw/Itsekiri war.’’