The Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP) has expressed worry over the deployment of soldiers to the Niger Delta, which includes Ogoniland, noting that military operations of this kind simply refreshes their memory of the years of state repression under Major Paul Okuntimo of the Nigerian Army, an experience they wish never to be reminded of.
MOSOP, in a statement in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital, yesterday, and signed its Publicity Secretary, Fegalo Nsuke, said it was disturbed that with the poor state of health prevalent in Ogoni, following years of living with environmental pollution, military operations that send fierce reminders of their painful experiences with the Nigerian soldiers would only result in deteriorating health conditions of its people and eventual/sudden death.
“We recall recently, in February last year, when military raids on some Ogoni communities only resulted in over 35 deaths, including a pregnant mother, Mrs. Ledee.
“Our experience with the Nigerian Army had unfortunately been very sorrowful and pathetic, with each leaving us in pain and human loses. The only memory we have of the Nigerian Army is about the repression, deaths, pains and torture they leave with us.
“MOSOP, therefore, rejects the deployment of the military in Ogoni and maintains that effective policing, which the government has failed to do, is a more effective remedy to the security situation in the entire Niger Delta.”
It, therefore, called on the authorities of the Nigerian Army not to throw Ogoniland into another round of mourning and sorrow with its planned military operations.