Nobody can stop me from fighting for the emancipating my people – Tompolo
By Our Correspondent
Former militant leader of the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND), Chief Government Ekpemopolo (alias Tompolo) has said that nobody can stop him from fighting for the emancipation of his people.
He said he will not be deterred by persecution and state act of terror against his person and communities in Ijaw land by the Federal Government.
Tompolo who stated this in an open letter to President Muhammadu Buhari and made available to The POINT in Warri, accused the regime of President Buhari for marking him as number enemy of the state because of his natural and open association with his kinsman and former President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan.
“I have been marked as state enemy number one by the President Muhammadu Buhari regime because of my natural and open association with my kinsman and former President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, in addition my support for Governor Seriake Dickson in the 2016 Bayelsa State Gubernatorial election presumed as against the anointed APC candidate of the Federal Government, Chief Timipre Sylver.
“It would be recalled that in the wake of the renewed hostilities and destruction of crude oil facilities by unknown persons in the Niger Delta region last year, the powers that be now found an ample opportunity to frame me on trumped up accusations and charges, subsequently I was falsely and maliciously accused by the Federal Government of Nigeria as the brain behind the then unrest. In furtherance of my persecution, I was accused by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) of fraudulently selling a stretch of land to the government for 13billon naira,” he wrote.
In the letter titled, “Tompolo’s Father One Year Remembrance: President Buhari receives fresh powerful message,” Tompolo also accused President Buhari for being responsible for his father’s death, saying that his father “was killed by the Nigerian Army as directed by President Muhammadu Buhari led Federal Government of Nigeria, on September 7, 2016.”
He added, “In an orchestrated plot the Nigerian Army was unleashed on Gbaramatu Kingdom in search of me, and the rampaging soldiers stormed my father’s home in Kurutie Town, physically brutalised him to the point of death.
“He sustained injuries in one of his legs and due to lack of medical facilities in the area he could not be treated and could also not be timely evacuated because of the siege and blockade by the Nigerian Army. By the time he was taken to Warri after many days, the doctors advised that the lower limb of the injured leg be amputated due to infection, unfortunately a few days after as a result of the physical brutality meted out on him by soldiers of the Nigerian Army, his sustained injuries led to his death.
“Since then, the President Muhammadu Buhari administration and the Nigerian Army have not set up any enquiries on the death of my beloved father. Our father’s life was brutally cut short on the orders of President Buhari by soldiers of the Nigerian Army. My family has been painfully deprived of the love of its great Patriarch. The death of my father in the hands of the Federal Government of Nigeria is in tradition of a long list of martyred Ijaws and Niger Deltans who dare to ask for a better and equitable participation in the management of the oil and gas wealth taken from our very ancestral soil.
“The Ijaw freedom icon, Maj. Isaac Adaka Jasper Boro, the Ogoni rights leader Ken Saro Wiwa and numerous young men and women in the Niger Delta have paid the ultimate price of freedom with their lives. It would be proper to assume that President Muhammadu Buhari now appreciates the value of human life having been humbled by his recent experiences with ill health, a reminder of the frailty and mortality of human existence.
“God is the supreme arbiter of the universe and each and every one of us cannot escape the karma of divine retribution. While on all of his medical tourism and sojourn in world class medical facilities in the UK, which bills were paid with proceeds ultimately derived from crude oil and gas revenue in my backyard, the mass of the Niger Delta people and Nigerians continue to be denied access to basic health facilities. Furthermore, I wish to use this medium to advise Mr President to turn a new leaf and seek the true face of God who has given him a new lease of life. His life has been saved while he orders the destruction of others.”
Tompolo said as they continue to mourn and remember his late patriarch, Late Chief Thomas Osen Ekpemupolo he will continue to seek for justice “to apprehend and hold accountable the very soldiers responsible for his the death of his father so that he can finally rest in peace and his descendants can be fulfilled.”
He noted that the problem of environmental despoliation and degradation and issues of political, economic and social injustice and inequalities arising out of the oil and gas explorations aided by the policies of the Federal Government of Nigeria will still looms larger by the day, adding that intimidation and threat is now employed to cow Niger Deltans in the place of engagement and positive tangibles.
While reminding Mr President that his bank accounts remain frozen on his orders, Tompolo said this action has made him to be financially incapacitated and prevented him from performing his natural obligations as a father in paying his daughter and other dependants tuition fees and sundry expenses.
He said President Buhari’s public asset declaration puts him way beyond the near capacity to have funded the education of his children in world class universities in the United Kingdom and also provided the affluence and luxury that they enjoy in the UK.
“I make this observation because it demonstrates your personal insincerity and the injustices meted out to Nigerians by your policies. I am sure by now Vice President Yemi Osinbajo would have briefed you as is expected of government protocols, his visit to the take-off campus of the Nigerian Maritime University with standing structures and world class facilities is a testament to my personal values of hard work, probity and accountability. Mr Vice President and other government functionaries will bear witness to the monumental facilities in place that could be assumed to have been sold far below its true value.
“On the contrary it means that your Minister of Transport, Mr Rotimi Amaechi riding on the wave of victory and new found political power and motivated by hate and vengeance lied out rightly when he claimed that I sold an empty stretch of land to the Federal Government of Nigeria. I understand that Mr Rotimi Amaechi is a high stake investor with campaign funds that ushered in your regime and as such he now seems insulated from the deliberate mischief and quagmire that he has dug your government into.
“I hope you have realize that I was falsely accused. It is a great travesty of social justice to and disdain for us that we are being persecuted instead of praise for our personal efforts where government failed in its responsibilities, all for the building of the Maritime University in Gbaramatu Kingdom, a place hosting over eight flow stations in the oil industry and the Niger Delta where over 90% of Nigeria’s revenue is derived from. In this context, it will not be out of place to ask the juxtaposing question of what economic significance is your hometown Daura, which you approved construction of a railway line to, and the construction of a helipad with revenue derived from oil and gas in the Niger Delta region?
“The wealth of the Niger Delta is being freely appropriated and vigorously used to fund the reconstruction of the North East and other parts of Nigeria, on the contrary after much diplomacy of pleading by Ijaws and other well meaning Nigerians we earnestly await the commencement of academic activities at the Maritime University Okerenkoko,” Tompolo said.
Tompolo also accused the Nigerian Navy under the behest of President Buhari administration of allegedly looting his Waterfront and Jetty facilities in Edjeba, Warri, which he added was maliciously and unlawfully seized by the EFCC.