By Emma Amaize
ASABA—THE Ijaw People Development Initiative, IPDI, Warri, Delta State, has said that the hyperactive attempt by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, to arraign the leader of the defunct Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta, MEND, Government Ekpemupolo, alias Tompolo, in court, was to serve the private interests of some scheming persons.
National President of the group, Austin Ozobo, told Vanguard on phone, “It is palpable that the court summons demanding Tompolo’s compulsory appearance does not serve the best interest of the country, it was meant to serve the personal interests of some unscrupulous elements.
“In the first instance, he did not receive the summons in question even as at Wednesday and could not have appeared in court the next day, Thursday. The people who orchestrated the affair know he would not appear in court on Thursday. They have a hidden agenda.
“This is simply an attempt to witch-hunt him politically. We condemn the flagrant threats to declare Tompolo wanted, which is the next plan.
“It is a fact that the judiciary is no longer independent. President Muhammadu Buhari now controls the judiciary, they should go ahead and make any order that suits him.”
IPDI, however, advised, “The government in our opinion should harmonize Tompolo’s many contributions as regards the sustainable peace in the Niger Delta and not upset him with flimsy accusations.
“Oil supply in this country was cut down to 500 barrels from 2.5 million barrels per day and Tompolo yielded to former Presidents Umaru Yar’Adua and Goodluck Jonathan’s call and accepted amnesty and today, the daily crude supply has increased to 2.8 million barrels.
“From when he accepted amnesty till now, he has been helpful to government at various levels in maintaining law and order. So, it is left for the current government to decide what it wants to do, to continue to witch-hunt him for political reasons or act otherwise.”