Jun 23, 2011

Ogoni: ‘We’ll Resist Ogoni Land Grabbing—MOSOP’

MOSOP take peaceful measures to prevent army base relocation to Ogoni. 

Below is an article published by Scoop World:

THE Ogoni people of Rivers State, have vowed that they will resist by all available legal means any large scale aquisition of their land for whatever project even for the relocation of a military facility.

At their Crisis Management meeting held in Port Harcourt, the state capital, on the platform of the Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP), on Thursday night, they reiterated their opposition to ''land grabbing'' in their area whether intended for relocation of a military barracks, agricultural estate or for whatever purpose.

MOSOP Information Officer, Mr. Bari-ara Kpalap, told AkanimoReports that the Ogoni people have frowned seriously at the deployment of scores of fiercesome and fully armed soldiers to the proposed site of the land to be acquired.

According to the Ogoni group, ''these armed military men molest and intimidate local farmers while forcefully surveying the farmlands. The heavy presence of men of the Nigerian army supervising and shielding the survey work provides clearest evidence yet that the forceful acquisition of the land from local communities is in preparation for the relocation of a military base from Port Harcourt to Ogoni.

Mr. Kpalap, told AkanimoReports that information available to MOSOP points to a huge conspiracy occasioning the current sad developments.

But, while the Nigerian Army appears to have no strategic reason to warrant the relocation of the Port Harcourt Cantonment alias Bori camp to Ogoni, useful evidences strengthen fears that the slick alliance between Shell and the state, is at play.

''The calculation we have uncovered, is that with a military barracks in the heart of Ogoni, the people would be sufficiently cowed to submission, which would facilitate Shell’s commencement of oil production without a negotiated agreement with the people. Already state officials testing the waters have publicly accused Ogoni of blocking oil extraction thus stalling improvements in the state’s revenue standing'', the MOSOP spokesman said.

''If the government actually requires land for agricultural development in Ogoni, it should look at the existing farm estates that have failed woefully. But, if the government requires land for relocation of Bori Camp military facility from Port Harcourt it would serve her very well to look elsewhere because Ogoni would resist it through every lawful means'', they argued.

Meanwhile MOSOP says they will be holding their National Congress this weekend, to discuss ''critical issues'' affecting the Ogoni people and call on all sons and daughters of Ogoni to attend.