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Vacate our land or be prepared to kill us, Uvwie people tell Nigerian Army

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By Festus Ahon
ASABA – MIFFED by the alleged illegal occupation of their land by the Nigerian Army, the people of Uvwie kingdom, Uvwie Local Government Area, Delta State, Monday, vowed to embark on a showdown with the soldiers, saying they are prepared to die than to allow the continued plundering of their land.

Recruits undergo training at the headquaters of the Depot of the Nigerian Army in Zaria, Kaduna State in northcentral Nigeria, on October 5, 2017.

They also threatened to drag the Nigerian Army to the United Nations and the World Court should they continue to hold on to their land.

The community, in a statement signed by their Counsel, Chief Victor Otomiewo lamented the disregard of the Army to the orders of President Muhammadu Buhari and the House of Representatives Committee on Public Petitions to discontinue from the acquisition and sales of their land to private individuals.

Otomiewo, in the statement, said: “The Uvwie people of Uvwie kingdom have finally resolved to take their destinies into their hands by resorting to a showdown with the authorities of the Nigerian Army any moment from now.

“It would be recalled that sometime in December 2017 and January 2018, the Uvwie people took their agitations for the release of their land by the Army authorities to House of Representatives Committee on Public Petitions. At the public hearing of the committee, the Uvwie people were able to make out a case to the committee for the release of their land as the Army High Command was unable to produce a single document to establish their continuous hold on to the land of the Uvwie people under the guise of a supposed acquisition.

“The House of Representatives Committee on Public Petitions, also by its letter of 29th March, 2018 addressed to the Chief of Army Staff and the Commanding Officer of the 3rd Battalion, Nigerian Army, Effurun Barracks and signed by the Chairman of the committee on Public Petitions, directed the Chief of Army Staff to stop any kind of work on the land pending the final resolution of the House on the petition of the Uvwie people.

“In June 2018, President Muhammadu Buhari directed the Army High Command to stop the selling of the land of the Uvwie people to private developers. Instead of adhering to the President’s order, the Army High Command has been persistent in their activities.

“Recently, the Army invaded Ohorhe town, an Uvwie community sharing boundary with the land supposedly acquired by the Army and planted several sign posts with the inscription – “Army Land, Keep Off.

“The military authorities have concluded plans to invade the town and pull down every structure with a view to plot out the lands for sale to private developers through the instrumentality of the Nigerian Army Properties Limited, a company incorporated by the Army authorities.”

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