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  • News - South South - Bayelsa
  • Updated: November 28, 2023

Bayelsa: Group writes IGP over invasion of community

Bayelsa: Group writes IGP over invasion of community

Bayelsans for Accountability and Good Governance, or BAGG, has written to the Inspector General of Police, Kayode Egbetokun, over the alleged armed invasion of the Igbomotoru community in Bayelsa State's Southern Ijaw Local Government Area.

The group also demanded that the former Minister of State for Petroleum Resources and APC governorship candidate in the state, Chief Timipre Sylva, and his deputy, Joshua Maciver, be arrested immediately for their alleged involvement in the tragedy.

Despite protests and allegations against Maciver for attempting to violently install a new paramount ruler in the community, preliminary investigations revealed that Sylva and Maciver were implicated by the use of military gunboats and security personnel attached to the pipeline surveillance firm, Tantita Security Services Limited.

In a statement issued on Tuesday by its spokesman, Comrade Pere Solomon, the organization also claimed that the invasion of Igbomotoru was part of a plot to harm individuals who opposed APC candidate Sylva's governorship ambition.

“We back the community in its claim that Joshua MacIver, is the alleged mastermind of the armed invasion to oppress them and to also install one Friday Jonathan, who had been rejected as Paramount Ruler of the community.

“This is among the reasons why the Former President, Goodluck Jonathan, said that he would have taken his mother out of Bayelsa State to Abuja if the PDP had lost the state during the November 11th 2023 Bayelsa State governorship election.

“We also confirm that the community, which had been peaceful before and after the outcome of the election, is gradually being thrown into crisis which may result in bloodshed if those involved are not cautioned and arrested.

“We call on the federal and state governments to check the activities of Tantita Security, Chief Timipre Sylva and Joshua Maciver in order to promote dialogue and avoid a bloodbath in the state, because neither Tantita Security personnel, Chief Timipre Sylva, and Joshua Maciver have a monopoly on violence and armed struggle.

“While we call on Governor Douye Diri not to allow Sylva and Maciver to replicate the bloodshed visited upon Nembe-Bassambiri people in Igbomotoru community, the Inspector-General of Police and the Chief of Defence Staff should check these rising security breaches, including the destruction of lives and property to quell rising tensions across the state,” the group said in its statement.  

However, Maciver, the APC's deputy governorship candidate and State Coordinator, Tantita Security Services Nigeria Limited (Bayelsa Operations), denied the allegation, insisting that the military's presence is to protect federal assets and, by extension, lives and properties in the area, not to intimidate anyone.

The allegations levelled against Maciver and Tantita Security Services Nigeria Limited, he claims, are false.

He said, “The recent publication from the Caretaker Chairman and the video making the rounds, of a supposed protest carried out by mischievous elements to bring the operations of Tantita Security Services to disrepute, what the organizers fail to acknowledge is that Tantita Security Services Nigeria Limited, as a private security company, does not possess the authority to order federal forces but rather provide credible intelligence to guide federal forces in combating illegal bunkering activities.” 

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