By Nathan Nwakamma
Yenagoa, May 5, 2020
The Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) on Tuesday urged the military authority to exercise restraint in its operations against criminal elements in order not to trample on innocent citizens.
The youth group made the appeal in a statement issued by Kennedy Olorogun, Frank Akiefa, Chairman and Secretary of IYC National Transition Committee.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports the military is carrying out an operation against pirates in the Foropa community of Bayelsa, where suspected hideouts were torched.
Foropa is a coastline settlement by the Atlantic coastline in Southern Ijaw Local Government Area.
“The IYC leadership laments the plight and trauma of military invasion on the predominantly law abiding people.
“The leadership of Foropa community has pledged to cooperate with the military in fishing out suspects to face prosecution. (But) the innocent must be isolated from violent molestation.
“No matter the gravity of offence committed by suspects from Foropa they should be arrested and prosecuted in line with extant laws, the military cannot be persecutor and judge.”
When contacted for comments, Coordinator of the Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. John Enenche, told NAN that the said troops were only carrying out their duties with professionalism.
“Troops did not molest anyone as no one was found in the house. It is just the pirates’ hideout that was torched.”