A new rebel group identified as the Urhobo Revolutionary Army, has sprung in the oil-rich Niger Delta region of Nigeria, claiming to fight for the rights of the Urhobo people for years of alleged injustices, exploitation and neglect. The new rebel group has risen just a month after a federal government amnesty was issued to every rebelling sect in the troubled region.
The Urhobo Revolutionary Army declared its own struggle for justice in the Niger-Delta region. “The Urhobo people would no longer accept the present docility and non-involvement of the Urhobo Nation in the Niger-Delta struggle. We condemn with all seriousness, the sell-out and sit-on-the-fence attitude of certain Urhobo leaders who were allegedly pursuing selfish interest, rather than the Urhobo collective interest,” a statement by the group, reportedly, read.
The new group claims to have sworn allegiance with the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger-Delta (MEND) and Niger-Delta Peoples Volunteer Force (NDPVF) to radically redress years of socio-economic and political injustice against the people of the Urhobo ethnic nationality.
There has since been attacks on Nigeria’s major gas production plant disrupting gas supply and cutting down electricity supply in the Delta state region.
The Nigerian government is yet to address the emergence of this new group in the wake of a successful implementation of the presidential amnesty that kicked off formally on August 6, 2009.
Regarding the presidential amnesty, the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND), claims that it had been approached by the Nigerian government to own up to piles of weapons belonging to the Nigerian Army which would be delivered secretly to an arms collection center if they agree to the plan.
According to Mend, this “desperate measure, which aims to give the amnesty program some semblance of progress has the input and connivance of the Amnesty Committee, Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs, Ministry of Defense, as well as the Joint Task Force.
“We know that some unscrupulous individuals will participate in this scam because of the money involved, and as such, we are using this opportunity to raise the alarm before Nigerians and the international community is hoodwinked.”
The Nigerian government has, since the accusatory statement from the new rebellion in the Niger Delta and MEND’s, yet to address the issue in the coming days.