Fears were raised today that Nigeria’s militant group- the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) may resume fresh attacks on Nigerian oil installations by September 15, at the end of its 60 days ceasefire
Accusing the Nigerian government of deceit in the implementation of the on going Amnesty programme, MEND, through its spokes person of MEND, Jomo Gbomo, said in a statement today that weapons mostly bought by the government were displayed Saturday at Yenagoa in southeast Bayelsa state.
“In the midst of sheer deceit, MEND will be compelled to resume with ferocious attacks on the oil industry at the end of our ceasefire on September 15, 2009 to prove that weapons being displayed are mostly government-owned and those surrendering them have not been part of the previous campaigns like Hurricane Barbarossa, Piper Alpha and Moses that brought the government to their knees,” Gbomo said.
MEND declared a 60-day ceasefire July 14 and hasn’t carried out any attacks since then.
Nigerian President Umaru Yar’Adua granted amnesty to Niger Delta militants in June and urged them to lay down their equipment, arms and ammunition between Aug. 6 and Oct. 4. MEND rejected the offer and demanded constructive dialogue that addresses what it calls the region’s root issues such as development and ” fiscal federalism,” or control of oil resources by oil producing states.
Gbomo said “the ongoing amnesty program by the government of Nigeria seems to have achieved separating those who still have the zeal to fight for our freedom from those who were in it for the money.”
“Today, Saturday, August 22, 2009 that sorting process was again re-enacted in Yenagoa, Bayelsa state where weapons mostly bought by the government were displayed and the boys separated from the men in the circus,” Gbomo said.