October 24, 2014

Eight people killed in renewed Bayelsa violence

Security officials say eight people are feared dead in fighting between former militants and unidentified gunmen in Bayelsa. Reuters reports the gunmen opened fire on the former militants in renewed violence in Nigeria’s oil-rich delta. The eight victims include the younger brother of General Reuben Wilson, leader of a former militant group. The report says tensions are growing between militants who benefited from government handouts following the 2009 Amnesty and foot soldiers who do the dirty work and still don’t get a slice of the benefits. The killings occurred on Saturday night, at about 2 a.m., at the Lobia waterside. ...

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Presidential aide warns of “dire consequences” in Niger Delta if Jonathan is not re-elected in 2015

Recent startling comments attributed to the chairman of the amnesty programme in Nigeria’s oil-rich delta, Kingsley Kuku, has not only raised eyebrows, but also questions about how long the tentative peace/ceasefire in the Niger Delta following the 2009 amnesty deal will last. The Premium Times reported that Mr. Kuku, in a meeting with U.S. officials in Washington on Thursday said “It is only a Jonathan presidency that can guarantee continued peace and energy security in the Niger Delta.” The Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta warned of “dire consequences” if President Goodluck Jonathan does not get a second ...

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Northern youths dismiss MEND threats as “callous and counter-productive”

Northern youths have dismissed Sunday’s threats by southern militant group, Movement for the Emancipation of Niger Delta, to launch a religious war as “unfortunate, callous and counter-productive.” In a statement, the national president of the Arewa Youths Forum, Alhaji Ibrahim Gambo Gujungu, accused MEND of “putting spanners in teh works for unpatriotic, selfish economic benefits.” MEND sparked fears of a religious war in Nigeria after they declared in a statement that they will assassinate Islamic cleric and destroy Islamic institutions starting on May 31. They claimed the mission, codenamed Operation Barborosa, is in an effort to “save Christianity in Nigeria ...

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MEND threatens religious war on May 31, say only the Church and Henry Okah can stop them

Southern militia group, the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta, is set to embark on a self-assigned mission to “save Christianity in Nigeria from annihilation” by instigating a religious war. According to media reports, the group, based in Nigeria’s Christian-dominated south, is threatening to assassinate Islamic clerics, bomb mosques, hajj camps and Islamic institutions as of May 31. Jomo Gbomo, purported spokesman for MEND, revealed the codename for their destructive plan is “Operation Barborosa”. He said in a statement: “The bombing of mosques, hajj camps, Islamic institutions, large congregations in Islamic events and assassination of clerics that propagate ...

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“Gate of hell let loose” – MEND rejects jail sentence of Henry Okah

Militant group, the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND), has rejected the sentence on its former leader Henry Okah, who was sentenced by the South Guateng High Court in South Africa to 24 years in prison. Okah was found guilty of several charges of terrorism and tied to the Abuja and Warri bombings in 2010. Comrade Azizi, who claimed to be speaking on behalf of the group, said in a statement: “Boko Haram has killed more innocent Nigerians than any other militancy groups in the country and yet their spokesperson was handed a three year sentence, this ...

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Henry Okah sentenced to 24 years in jail

A High Court in Johannesburg on Tuesday jailed convicted Nigerian terrorist Henry Okah to 24 years in jail, South Africa press reports. Judge Neels Claassen, who handed down the sentence, said: “Effectively, the accused [Okah] is therefore sentenced to 24 years imprisonment.” Okah was convicted of 13 counts of terrorism on January 21. The charges related to two car bombings in Abuja, Nigeria, which claimed 12 lives and left 36 injured on October 1, 2010. His charges also relate to a second bombing in Warri on 15 March 2010 at a post amnesty dialogue meeting. The judge said the State ...

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Jonathan refutes claims that he masterminded 2010 Independence Day bombings

The Presidency on Wednesday released a press statement denying allegations by Henry Okah, the detained leader of the southern militant group, that Goodluck Jonathan was behind the 2010 Independence day bombings. Okah, who is set to face trial in a South African court, is charged with the deadly car bomb attack that killed at least 12 during the nation’s 50th anniversary celebration in the capital city of Abuja. Now the beleaguered leader of the Movement of the Emancipation of the Niger Delta group, is set to swear to a 194-page affidavit accusing President Jonathan of being the mastermind behind the ...

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Opinion – Wole Soyinka on the politics of Boko Haram, says Jonathan underestimates the desperation of the sect

Written by Wole Soyinka Let me begin by reminding everyone that Boko Haram has a very long history, whether you describe Boko Haram as an army of the discontent, or even as some people grotesquely try to suggest, “revolutionaries,” or you describe them as, legitimately, this time, as marginalised or feeling marginalised. When I say that the phenomenon has a very long history, I am talking about a movement that relies on religion as a fuel for their operation, as a fuel for mobilisation, as the impetus, an augmentation of any other legitimate or illegitimate grievance that they might have ...

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Okah still insists Jonathan masterminded 2010 Independence Day bombing

In a shocking twist of events, Henry Okah, the detained alleged leader of the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND), has claimed that Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan is the “mastermind” behind the 2010 Independence Day bombing that killed at least 12 and injured many more, the Premium Times has reported. Okah, in an affidavit deposed at a South African court, claimed that not only did Jonathan’s government plan the Independence Day attack, but had also orchestrated a similar attack months before. “It is my belief that President Goodluck Jonathan’s government working with a faction of MEND planned ...

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Shell assessing $4 billlion Nigeria oil projects

Oil producing giant, Royal Dutch Shell has said that it will invest some $4 billion in project set to boost oil production in Africa’s most populous nation and cut flaring of associated natural gas, the Chief Executive Peter Voser said. He explained that the projects should be completed by 2015, Reuters reported. The company has suffered major criticism in Nigeria for environmental damages caused by oil spills from the company’s pipelines in the nation’s oil rich southern delta. It has also been criticized for flaring gas instead of trapping it to sell as liquefied natural gas (LNG) or to supply ...

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