IJAW ELDERS FORUM, LAGOS
20th February, 2019
The attention of the Ijaw Elders Forum (IEF), Lagos has been drawn to a reported incidence of vandalization of the Presidential Amnesty Program Training Center in Kaiama, Bayelsa State. Though subject to further confirmation, we the Ijaw Elders Forum, Lagos by this press statement presents our reaction.
Firstly, we find it regrettable and unfortunate that such an incident occurred in a community within Ijaw Land. Hence;
- We unequivocally condemn the reported incident
- IEF requests an immediate and thorough investigation of the incident by the state and federal authorities
- The investigation should be done free of prejudices, fear or favor to identify the sponsors or perpetrators of this unfortunate incident.
- That once this investigative process is quickly, yet carefully concluded, the suspects should be duly prosecuted in a court of justice in Bayelsa State where it occurred.
- Whether the investigation is done through an investigative panel or judicial committee, the outcome should be made public as expeditiously as possible.
On behalf of all in Ijaw Nation, we wish to state and indeed emphasize that what is reported to have happened in Kaiama, is NOT characteristic of Ijaws as a people. Our very name and culture are based on the core values of truth and integrity. Therefore, while we fully condemn the dastardly act, we reiterate that this is purely an isolated incident not worthy of any stereotype.
We also call on all good and peace-loving Ijaw people to always rise and protect our infrastructure, property, dignity and credibility at all times. We should not let a few criminally-minded people amongst us to tarnish our image.
Finally, while we implore all governmental agencies to act quickly, we expect the investigation to be done objectively and diligently towards a just conclusion.
Atamuno Atamuno Efiye Bribena
Vice President Secretary General
Ijaw Elders Forum, Lagos Ijaw Elders Forum, Lagos