Written By: Anthony Miens Demebide
Today is wrapped in tears, pains, and anguish for the peaceful and lovely people of Ayakoromo town in Burutu Local Government Area of Delta State, Nigeria when Nigerian Military unconstitutionally bombarded the people in gruesome manner with properties and lives massively destroyed under the federal watch of His Excellency and former president of Nigeria, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonnathan in December 1, 2010.
The unreasoned militarilisation of this peace-loving community regrettably claimed precious lives of innocent citizens. LATE MR BONAVENTURE KALAMA, EGBE TOLO, and many others were among the victims of the unscrupulous attack for the sin of one man.
The Nigerian military in recent times has been on deliberate destructive missions. They had laid siege and gruesomely attacked Ijaw communities in Niger Delta most especially.
The Ayakoromo siege and attack was said to be a search for unrepentant militants as contained in reports but it was a melancholy. It turned out to be a bloodbath thereby claimed the lives of innocent citizens of this once a great community but it was brought to nothing.
Ayakoromo town is one of the largest communities in Burutu LGA, most populous with a landmark that ranks it as one biggest in the local government area.
The citizenry and residents scampered for safety as the whole community was set ablaze. It became like a graveyard; no houses, no cock to even crow at dawn for a long period, outplaced by grasses.
It was a bad omen and experience for the people of Ayakoromo, the home of my birth at the event of this bombardment from the fighter jets, warships from River Ayakoromo. These have created lasting web of pains in our hearts. They anchored at the edges of the town in siege, waited for the order, and they eventually responded in line to the order that got my dear community to zero.
Jonathan in his wisdom as a leader directed the military to rebuild Ayakoromo but never taken into cognizance the glories of the human resources who lost businesses worth billions of naira.
This unreplied genocide attracted pity and sympathy from the entire Niger Delta and beyond. His Excellency, Dr. Emmanuel Ewetan Uduaghan who was the governor of Delta state at the time of this unfortunate invasion visited, but couldn’t find words to concretize the tears-invoking sights and ordeals.
However, just as it’s contained in my previous posts on the Ayakoromo massacre, I want to once again commend Jonathan’s government for the order to rebuild the destroyed houses across board but the bereaved families and all those who lost businesses and means of livelihood have not been compensated by the Nigerian government and military after 11 years.
I had hope Jonathan’s administration would give complete justice to the bereaved families and the community at large none than the mere rebuilding of structures, compensating the people for a better life but my confidence and hope was smashed because he failed to do that which we rightly asked for.
Nevertheless, the agitations of the people remain resounding for a better building of confidence in the government, justice and equity to rehabilitate the people. The ordeals are the markers to remember this provocative event of free massacre of innocent citizens and total destruction of properties by the Nigerian military.
I prayerfully wish to call on the President of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari to come to the aid of Ayakoromo which was extremely destroyed for the sin of late militant, Gen. John Togo.
Though, this incident didn’t happen under Buhari’s watch but as the president of the federation, I plead with him in the voice of reason to extend hand of fellowship in rehabilitating the people to fully recover from the shock and indelible scars the militarization left behind.