Community and Police worried as gunmen kidnap 4 persons at funeral near Nigeria’s oil city of Port Harcourt; President Jonathan’s government issue new threat to deal with MEND, kidnappers….
By Chido Nwangwu.
USAfrica, November 14, 2010: The menace of kidnapping in Nigeria continues to take new twists of criminal and abominable levels; and some of those have been reported here on USAfricaonline.com and our various blogs.
The new low is the incident almost 26 hours ago where a group of gunmen violently entered and kidnapped four individuals at a family’s event for a burial wake keeping or burial vigil (as it is popularly known in Nigeria) in the small town of Ihuaba (near the the oil-rich city of Port Harcourt in Rivers State).
According to one of the Nigerian police spokespersons Akin Fakorede who made a statement a few minutes ago, today, Sunday November 14, 2010: “The incident occurred at 01:00 am on Saturday in Ihuaba community (outside Port Harcourt, capital of southern Rivers State) during a vigil for a burial. The gunmen shot sporadically and made away with four men…. Police have launched a manhunt for the kidnappers.”
The government of President Goodluck Jonathan has been criticized for inadequately the brazen acts of violence and kidnappings in some key states of Nigeria especially in his local, primary base, the Niger Delta. The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) has openly taken credit for bombings and some kidnappings and its leaders and facilitators have been welcomed in the office of President Jonathan in Abuja, a few days after persons affiliated with MEND claimed responsibility for the October 1 deadly bombings during the 50th anniversary of Nigeria’s independence. A majority of local and international analysts and civic leaders criticized Jonathan for excusing and absolving MEND for the acts long before any investigations were made.
To his government’s credit, it intervened in the kidnapping mess in Aba in Abia State through heavy use of the army and the Police, and brought some calm to the evident 20-something months evident incapacities of the Abia Governor Theodore Orji and Abia local operatives on the problem. See related reports and hundreds of insights on USAfricaonline.com and the leading pan-Igbo e-group, IgboEvents.
But only a few days ago, the armed forces of Nigeria which has been in a back-n-forth with MEND/kidnappers/agitators/environmentalists/etc issued one of its many strong statements threatening to bring order and the weight of the law to those who make trouble and kidnappings.
Jonathan’s recently appointed chief of defence staff, Air Marshal Oluseyi Petiri issued a statement arguing that MEND’s camps set and moved around the creeks of the Niger Delta and the operations of other sub-grougroups camps “will no longer be tolerated…. These people are criminals and will be treated as such.”
Based on USAfrica analyses of the previous rhetorics and actions of government, reflecting the key connections, pressure groups and contacts of MEND reaching the Jonathan presidency, it is easier said than done. Special report and context by Chido Nwangwu, Founder & Publisher of the first U.S-based, African-owned newspaper website on the internet, www.USAfricaonline.com, Nigeria360, and about 10 other blogs.
Related insight: Eight lessons of the 1994 Rwanda Genocide. By Chido Nwangwu, Publisher of USAfrica multimedia networks, Houston. https://usafricaonline.com/2009/11/01/chido-8lessons-rwanda-genocide/
Obama’s Africa agenda, our business and democracy. By Chido Nwangwu, Publisher of USAfricaonline.com, USAfrica The Newspaper, Houston.