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Wednesday, 22 June 2011

REPRESSION IN IKEBIRI, MY COMMUNITY APRIL 27 1999

REPRESSION IN IKEBIRI
ENVIRONMENTAL TESTIMONIES #13
Date: IKEBIRI, BAYELSA STATE, NIGERIA, April 27, 1999


"I SAW DEATH"
Testimonies of Chief Samuel F. Fiubole, Deputy chief, Ikebiri (detained 8 days)
INTRODUCTION
Nigerian Agip Oil Company, popularly known as AGIP, has a long history of negligent environmental practices in the Niger Delta. Several spills remain unattended to and where attempts are made to clear them these are usually most haphazardly done. The appeals of the patient Ikebiri people continued to fall on deaf ears.

Tokenism is the key word in community relations with the oil companies operating in Nigeria. They all adopt the "lollipop approach" in bids to silence the people. This strategy is wearing thin. Consider what led to the carnage at Ikebiri on Monday, April 19, 1999. Offering scholarships to the local people should be a happy thing, in other places. AGIP sent the scholarship forms through one Lt. Cdr. Adaji, Officer-in-Charge of the Internal Security Task Force at Agip.s Brass Terminal.
As reported in our Field Report #22 (titled 'Carnage at Ikebiri'), this military officer warned the youths not to tamper with Agip facilities except if they wanted a taste of the horrors that his team of army and naval personnel can inflict on them. On Saturday 17/4/99, the youths shut down Agip wells located in Ikebiri. The wells included Tebidaba well nos., 1,3,7,9,10,11.

The threat was not empty. Riding on this confrontation and an existing intra-communal conflict (over control of boats donated by AGIP), a combined team of navy and army sent by the Nigerian Agip Oil Company (NAOC) descended on the community on Monday 19/4/99, shot and killed at least eight local people of Ikebiri. Fifteen persons got missing.

To further compound their grief, two of the traditional rulers were arrested and taken along with two of the corpses to unknown destinations. ONE OF THOSE TRADITIONAL RULERS CAME BACK FROM BEYOND AND SPOKE TO US ABOUT HIS ORDEAL.
"I SAW DEATH"

"We were asked to come down to Yenagoa on Monday 19/4/99 by the Area Commander of police to settle the boat problem. So in the morning I left our Royal Highness (Chief Meren) at Ikebiri 1 to meet up with the rest of the persons at Ikebiri 2. I met Chief Okon Esule who was preparing himself but informed me he would join us after eating some pepper soup. The rest of us were waiting when some boys came from our Royal Highness that we were getting late for the meeting. While we were all preparing ourselves (dressing up), three boats carrying a combined team of naval and army officers with some Agip staff passed by Ikebiri 2 towards Ikebiri 1. We finished dressing, and all of us boarded the two boats with some other youths that wanted to cross over to Ikebiri 1. We were just departing from the waterfront when the three military boats that had returned to our area immediately confronted us.


IN THE SMOKE OF "BATTLE"

.Without asking any questions, one of their big boats (a double-85 engine boat) rammed into our boat and sank it whit all of us inside. Many of the youths inside swam to safety. By this time, they had started shooting at us. Because of the .chieftaincy dress. I was putting on I almost got drowned. I was rescued by some of the army boys who dragged Okon Esule and me into their boat, and asked us to lie flat on the boat.

"I did not see what was happening again but was only hearing gun shots. After some time, the army boys ordered us into one of our own boats where two of our Ikebiri boys were lying dead. I shivered at seeing so much blood but had no option. There was a hot argument between the army boys whether we should be killed or not. Finally, they settled on taking us down to Brass.


TORTURE AND ABUSE

"When we arrived at Brass, the army boys announced to their colleagues that 'these are sea pirates disturbing Agip.' On hearing this, they all descended on us, some with sticks and gun butts. They beat us and rained abuses on us. Some of the military boys even asked the team that brought us 'why didn't you kill them all there instead of bringing some alive.' We were then given pen and paper to write statements. I stated my activities that morning and how I was brought to Brass terminal.

"The commander read my statement and was mad at me when I had finished. He barked at me thus: 'look at what you have written. Do you want to implicate me? You are lucky I did not kill you there.' His men came at me again and battered me. I was given a new sheet of paper and they dictated to me what I should write. To prevent further beating, and with a gun pointed at my head, I obeyed. The same thing happened to Okon Esule.
THE MANUFACTURING OF EVIDENCE

"We were then taken to Yenagoa that evening to the Internal Security office of Major Oputa. Here, our military escort produced a bag containing red and white pieces of cloth, tied the pieces of cloth on us, and announced to their boss that we are "chiefs of Egbesu causing piracy." I don't know where they got the pieces of cloths. It appears to me that they always have them in stock stored somewhere. The military men gave us another round battering. Some of them wanted to try shooting at us to know if guns cannot kill us as "Egbesu Chiefs".

"From Yenagoa, they took us to Elele Army Barracks where we were further beaten before being taken to notorious Bori Camp at Port Harcourt the following day. At Bori Camp, we pleaded not to be beaten, and seeing our battered state they declined (thanks goodness). By this time, I was so hungry and dirty. Someone brought some bread for us and we ate. We were there for some days before we were returned to Yenagoa. At Yenagoa police station, we were shown the .statements. we made at Brass. I informed the officer that we wrote the statements at gunpoint after the original was torn. The officer asked us to write new statements which we did, and we were released from detention today (27/4/99)

"I did not know that we spent only eight (8) days in detention. I thought it was up to 3 weeks. After our release, friends rushed to the specialist hospital for medical check-up, and Okon Esule is on admission at the hospital because he received more battering with wounds in the head. It was really terrible."
WHAT YOU CAN DO
  • Send a letter of protest to an AGIP office nearest to you.
  • Nigerian Agip Oil Company Limited, Engineering Close Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria Tel: 2600100/9; 2621613 (office in charge of media affairs, Nigerian Agip Oil)
  • Join the campaign against oil companies working behind military shields and against their host communities.
  • Keep a critical eye on the activities of oil companies in your community, district or country
ENVIRONMENTAL TESTIMONIES: ALLOWING THE PEOPLE SPEAK WITH THEIR OWN VOICES

THE SIX PRINCIPLES OF KINGIAN NONVIOLENCE.

1. Nonviolence is a
way of life for
courageous people.
...2. Nonviolence seeks to win friendship and
understanding.
3. Nonviolence seeks to defeat injustice, not
people.
4. Nonviolence holds that suffering for a
cause can educate and transform.
5. Nonviolence chooses love instead of hate.
6. Nonviolence holds that the universe is on
the side of justice and that right will
eventually prevail.

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS RESULT IN NIGERIA

RESULTS FROM STATES(PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS 2011)1. FCTACN 2,327ANPP 3170CPC 131,576PDP 253,44412. OGUNACN 199555ANPP 2969CPC 17854PDP 3091773. ENUGUACN 1755ANPP 1111CPC 3753PDP 8021444. RIVERSPDP - 1817762ACN - 16382ANPP - 0CPC - 131825. JIGAWAPDP - 419252ACN - 117355ANPP - 7673CPC - 6639946. GOMBEPDP - 298247ACN - 0ANPP - 0CPC - 4898987. ONDOPDP - 387376ACN - 74253ANPP - 0CPC - 118308. NASARAWAPDP - 408,997ACN - 0ANPP - 0CPC - 278,3909. AKWA IBOMPDP - 1, 165, 629ACN - 54,148CPC - 5,348ANPP - 2,00010. KEBBIPDP - 369198ACN - 0ANPP - 0CPC - 50145311. ZAMFARAPDP - 238980ACN - 17970ANPP - 46554CPC - 62451512. IMOPDP - 1,381,357ACN - 14,825CPC - 7,591ANPP - 2,52013. KANOPDP - 440666ACN - 42353ANPP - 526310CPC - 162454314. PlateauPDP - 1,029,809CPC - 356,551,ACN -10,181,ANPP - 5,23515. BayelsaPDP - 504,811CPC - 691ACN - 370ANPP - 136.16. OYOPDP– 484755ACN – 252240ANPP – 017. ANAMBRAPDP - 1,100,700ACN - 0ANPP - 0CPC - 018. SOKOTOPDP - 309,070ACN - 0ANPP - 0CPC - 535,76919. DELTAPDP - 1,378,851ACN - 13,110ANPP - 0CPC - 8,96020. EBONYIPDP - 480,592ACN - 0ANPP - 14,296CPC - 1,00021. EKITIPDP - 135,009ACN - 116,981ANPP - 0CPC - 022. ABIAPDP - 1,029,000ACN - 0ANPP - 0CPC - 5,00023. ADAMAWAPDP - 561,170ACN - 79,000ANPP - 0CPC - 381,71124. BAUCHIPDP - 258,404ACN - 15,679ANPP - 8,777CPC - 1,315,20925. BENUEPDP - 658,488ACN - 197,487ANPP - 7,705CPC - 98,80926. BORNOPDP - 207,075ACN - 7,533ANPP - 37,279CPC - 909,76327. CROSS RIVERPDP - 624,000ACN - 400ANPP - 0CPC - 028 KADUNAPDP - 1,197,179ACN - 11,278ANPP - 0CPC - 1,334,24429. KATSINAPDP - 260,477ACN - 7,885ANPP - 0CPC - 864,34330. KOGIPDP - 399,816ACN - 8,516ANPP - 2,347CPC - 132,20131. TARABA32. KWARAPDP - 268,243ACN - 52,432ANPP - 1,672CPC - 83,60333. LAGOSPDP - 1,281,685ACN - 427,000ANPP - 0CPC - 189,98334. NIGERPDP - 308,484ACN - 0ANPP - 0CPC - 653,12135. OSUNPDP - 188,409ACN - 299,711ANPP - 3,617CPC - 6,997TOTALS ACROSS THE NATIONPDP - 21,475,852--- 60%ACN - 2,092,779---- 6%ANPP - 805,235----- 2%CPC - 11,653,379--- 32%NB: YOBE AND TARABA STATES EXCLUDED

Inauguration Address By Goodluck Jonathan

Inauguration Address by , President
Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, GCFR
On the Occasion of His Swearing-in as
President, Commander-in-Chief of the
Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of
Nigeria On Sunday, 29th May, 2011
PROTOCOL
1. My Dear Compatriots, I stand in
humble gratitude to you, this day, having
just sworn to the oath of office as
President, Commander-in-Chief of the
Armed Forces of our great nation.
2. I thank you all, fellow citizens, for the
trust and confidence, which you have
demonstrated through the power of
your vote. I want to assure you, that I
will do my utmost at all times, to
continue to deserve your trust.
3. I would like to specially
acknowledge the presence in our midst
today, of Brother Heads of State and
Government, who have come to share
this joyous moment with us. Your
Excellencies, I thank you for your
solidarity. I also wish to express my
gratitude, to the Representatives of
Heads of State and Government who are
here with us. My appreciation also goes
to the chairperson of the African Union
and other world leaders, our
development partners, and all our
distinguished guests.
4. I want to specially thank all
Nigerians for staying the course in our
collective commitment to build a
democratic nation. To members of the
PDP family and members of other
political parties, who have demonstrated
faith in our democratic enterprise, I
salute you.
5. At this juncture, let me acknowledge
and salute my friend and brother, Vice-
President Namadi Sambo; and my dear
wife, Patience, who has been a strong
pillar of support.
6. I thank her for galvanizing and
mobilizing Nigerian women for the
cause of democracy. In the same vein, I
owe a debt of gratitude to my mother
and late father. I cannot thank them
enough.
7. I cannot but pay tribute to our late
President, Alhaji Umaru Musa Yar’Adua,
with whom we won the Presidential
election four years ago, when I
contested as his running mate. May God
bless his soul.
8. I also wish to pay tribute to our
founding fathers, whose enduring
sacrifices and abiding faith in the unity
and greatness of our country, laid the
foundation for the nation. We take
enormous pride in their contributions.
The pivotal task of this generation, is to
lift our fatherland to the summit of
greatness.
9. Your Excellencies, Distinguished
Ladies and Gentlemen, earlier this year,
over seventy-three million eligible
Nigerians endured all manner of
inconvenience just to secure their voters
cards, in order to exercise the right to
choose those that will govern them.
10. At the polls, we saw the most
dramatic expressions of the hunger for
democracy. Stories of courage and
patriotism were repeated in many ways,
including how fellow citizens helped
physically challenged voters into polling
stations to enable them exercise their
franchise. The inspiring story of the one
hundred and three year-old man, and
many like him across the country, who
struggled against the physical limitations
of age to cast their vote, is noteworthy.
11. Such determination derives from
the typical Nigerian spirit of resilience in
the face of the greatest of odds. That
spirit has, over the years, stirred our
hopes, doused our fears, and
encouraged us to gather ourselves to
build a strong nation even when others
doubted our capacity.
12. Today, our unity is firm, and our
purpose is strong. Our determination
unshakable. Together, we will unite our
nation and improve the living standards
of all our peoples whether in the North
or in the South; in the East or in the
West. Our decade of development has
begun. The march is on. The day of
transformation begins today. We will
not allow anyone exploit differences in
creed or tongue, to set us one against
another. Let me at this point
congratulate the elected Governors,
Senators, members of the House of
Representatives and those of the States
Houses of Assembly for their victories at
the polls.
13. I am mindful that I represent the
shared aspiration of all our people to
forge a united Nigeria: a land of justice,
opportunity and plenty. Confident that a
people that are truly committed to a
noble ideal, cannot be denied the
realization of their vision, I assure you
that this dream of Nigeria, that is so
deeply felt by millions, will indeed come
to reality.
14. A decade ago, it would have been a
mere daydream to think that a citizen
from a minority ethnic group could
galvanize national support, on an
unprecedented scale, to discard ancient
prejudices, and win the people’s
mandate as President of our beloved
country. That result emanated from the
toil and sacrifice of innumerable
individuals and institutions, many of
whom may never get to receive public
appreciation for their effort.
15. Only a couple of days ago, I
received an entry on my Facebook page.
It was sent by Mr. Babajide Orevba. He
wrote to inform me that I had lost
a great fan. That fan was his father, Mr.
Emmanuel Bamidele Orevba. The
deceased, the son told me, was no
politician, but had campaigned
enthusiastically for my ticket. Tragically,
overwhelmed by the joy of our victory,
he collapsed, and passed on three days
later. I pray God Almighty to grant his
soul eternal rest.
16. The success of the 2011 elections
and the widespread acclaim which the
exercise received was due to the
uncommon patriotism and diligence
exhibited by many Nigerians, including
members of the Armed Forces, National
Youth Service Corps (NYSC) and others.
Unfortunately, despite the free, fair and
transparent manner the elections were
conducted, a senseless wave of violence
in some parts of the country led to the
death of ten members of the NYSC and
others. These brave men and women
paid the supreme sacrifice in the service
of our fatherland. They are heroes of our
democracy. We offer our heartfelt
prayers and condolences in respect of all
those who lost their lives.
17. In the days ahead, those of us that
you have elected to serve must show
that we are men and women with the
patriotism and passion, to match the
hopes and aspirations of you, the great
people of this country. We must
demonstrate the leadership,
statesmanship, vision, capacity, and
sacrifice, to transform our nation. We
must strengthen common grounds,
develop new areas of understanding
and collaboration, and seek fresh ideas,
that will enrich our national consensus.
18. It is the supreme task of this
generation to give
hope to the hopeless, strength to the
weak and protection to the defenceless.
19. Fellow citizens, the leadership we
have pledged is decidedly
transformative. The transformation will
be achieved in all the critical sectors,
by harnessing the creative energies of
our people.
20. We must grow the economy, create
jobs, and generate enduring happiness
for our people. I have great confidence
in the ability of Nigerians to transform
this country. The urgent task of my
administration is to provide a suitable
environment, for productive activities to
flourish. I therefore call on the good
people of Nigeria, to enlist as agents of
this great transformation.
21. My dear countrymen and women,
being a Nigerian is a blessing. It is also a
great responsibility. We must make a
vow that, together, we will make the
Nigerian Enterprise thrive.
22. The leadership and the
followership must strive to convert our
vast human and natural resources into
the force that leads to a greater Nigeria.
The Nigeria of our dreams must be built
on hard work and not on short cuts. Let
me salute the Nigerian workers who
build our communities, cities and
country. They deserve fair rewards, and
so do the women that raise our children,
and the rural dwellers that grow our
food.
23. The moment is right. The signs are
heart-warming. We are ready to take off
on the path of sustained growth and
economic development. In our
economic strategy, there will be
appropriate policy support to the real
sector of the economy, so that Small and
Medium Enterprises may thrive. Nigeria
is blessed with enormous natural
wealth, and my Administration will
continue to encourage locally owned
enterprises to take advantage of our
resources in growing the domestic
economy. A robust private sector is vital
to providing jobs for our rapidly
expanding population. But this must be
a collaborative effort.
24. We must form technical and
financial partnerships with global
businesses and organizations. We live in
an age where no country can survive on
its own; countries depend on each other
for economic well-being. Nigeria is no
different. Returns on investment in
Nigeria remain among the highest in the
world. We will continue to welcome
sustainable investment in our economy.
25. We will push programs and policies
that will benefit both local and foreign
businesses, but we must emphasize
mutual benefits and win-win
relationships. The overall ongoing
reforms in the banking and financial
sectors are therefore designed to
support the real sector of the economy.
26. To drive our overall economic
vision, the power sector reform is at the
heart of our industrialization strategy. I
call on all stakeholders, to cooperate
with my administration, to ensure the
success of the reforms.
27. Over the next four years, attention
will be focused on rebuilding our
infrastructure. We will create greater
access to quality education and
improved health care delivery. We will
pay special attention to the agricultural
sector, to enable it play its role of
ensuring food security and massive job
creation for our people.
28. The creation of the Nigerian
Sovereign Investment Authority will
immensely contribute to strengthening
our fiscal framework, by
institutionalizing savings of our
commodity-related revenues. With this
mechanism in place, we will avoid the
boom and bust cycles, and mitigate our
exposure to oil price volatility.
29. The lesson we have learnt is that
the resolution of
the Niger Delta issue is crucial for the
health of the nation’s economy. In the
interest of justice, equity and national
unity, we shall actively promote
the development of the region. I believe
that peace is a necessary condition for
development.
30. Fellow citizens, in every decision, I
shall always place the common good
before all else. The bane of corruption
shall be met by the overwhelming force
of our collective determination, to rid
our nation of this scourge. The fight
against corruption is a war in which we
must all enlist, so that the limited
resources of this nation will be used for
the growth of our common wealth.
31. I am confident that we have every
reason to look to the future with hope.
We owe ourselves and posterity the duty
of making this country respectable in the
comity of nations. Nigeria, as a
responsible member of the international
community, will remain committed to the
maintenance of global peace and
security. We will
continue to play an active role in the
United Nations. Our role in the African
Union, ECOWAS, and the Gulf of Guinea
will be enhanced to ensure greater
human and energy security.
32. Your Excellencies, Distinguished
Ladies and Gentlemen, this is a new
dawn for Africa. We fought for
decolonization. We will now fight for
democratization.
Nigeria, in partnership with the African
Union, will lead the process for
democracy and development in Africa. In
particular, we will support the
consolidation of democracy, good
governance and human rights in
the continent. Africa must develop its
vast resources to tackle poverty and
under-development.
33. Conscious of the negative effect of
insecurity on growth and development,
my Administration will seek
collaboration at bilateral and multilateral
levels, to improve our capability in
combating trans-border crimes. In this
regard, we will intensify our advocacy
against the illicit trades in small arms
and light weapons, which have become
the catalyst for conflicts on the African
continent. All Nigerian diplomatic
missions abroad are to accord this
vision of defending the dignity of
humanity the highest priority.
34. My fellow countrymen and women,
Nigeria is not just a land of promise; it
shall be a nation where positive change
will continue to take place, for the good
of our people. The time for lamentation
is over. This is the era of transformation.
This is the time for action. But Nigeria
can only be transformed if we all play
our parts with commitment and
sincerity. Cynicism and skepticism will
not help our journey to greatness. Let us
all believe in a new Nigeria. Let us work
together to build a great country that we
will all be proud of. This, is our hour.
35. Fellow Compatriots, lift your gaze
towards the horizon. Look ahead, and
you will see a great future, that we can
secure with unity, hard work and
collective sacrifice.
36. Join me now as we begin the
journey of transforming Nigeria.
•I will continue to fight, for your
future, because I am one of you.
•I will continue to fight, for improved
medical care for all our citizens.
•I will continue to fight for all citizens
to have access to first class education.
•I will continue to fight for electricity
to be available to all our citizens.
•I will continue to fight for an efficient
and affordable public transport system
for all our people.
•I will continue to fight for jobs to be
created through productive
partnerships.
37. You have trusted me with your
mandate, and I will never, never let you
down.
38. I know your pain, because I have
been there. Look beyond the hardship
you have endured. See a new beginning;
a new direction; a new spirit.
39. Nigerians, I want you to start to
dream again. What you see in your
dreams, we can achieve together. I call
upon all the Presidential candidates who
contested with me to join hands with us
as we begin the transformation of our
country.
40. Let us work together; let us build
together; let us bequeath a greater
Nigeria to the generations to come.
41. I thank you! God bless you all! And
God bless the Federal Republic of
Nigeria.