By ONYEKACHUKWU MELUWA, Warri
The Nigerian Army on Friday solicited for the cooperation of the traditional rulers of Udu and Ogbe-Ijoh Kingdoms, HRM.(Barr.) Emmanuel Bethel Otete Delekpe, Oworhu I, JP and HRM. Couple Oromoni as it launched the Exercise Crocodile Smile III in the Niger Delta Region.
The General Officer Commanding (GOC) of the Nigerian Army 6 Division, Maj. Gen. Jamil Sarham sought the cooperations when he visited the monarchs separately today.
Maj. Gen. Sarham said the launch of Exercise Crocodile Smille III in the Niger Delta Region is to identify criminal elements as well as curbing, militancy, crime, sea-piracy, violence and others.
He said the Army is seeking the cooperation of the leaders of the areas because without them, they can’t get to the people to keep and maintain the peace as well as attract developments to them.
“All I need is your understanding, supports and cooperation of yourself in this Kingdom.”
Maj. Gen. Sarham said the Army is in the area to keep the peace, maintain the peace and engenda developments.
Maj. Gen. Sarham also appealed to the two warring communities to embrace dialogue and anything that has to do with peace and security as a means of resolving the age long boundary disputes that has existed between them.
While noting that there is bound to be friction anywhere even among family members, Maj. Gen. Sarham stressed,”We should dialogue and resolve amicably.’
He also called on the youths in the areas to shun all forms of violence saying,”It does not pay.
“Soldiers and Policemen that are well trained to manage peace do not like violence.
” When you engage in things that will disturb the peace, the Security Agencies will do what they’re supposed to do.
Maj.Gen. Sarham also appealed to the Media to always do balanced reportage of issues within the area to save it from going out of control.
In a remark, the Ovie of Udu Kingdom, HRH. (Barr.) Emmanuel Bethel Otete Delekpe Oworhu I,JP said the Aladja people are ready to make peace with their neighbours because they are not trouble makers.
The reverred monarch however said the Ogbe-Ijoh people should not pretend before the Army stressing,”We don’t attack.
“It is not only Ogbe-Ijoh that attacks, all Ijaws assemble to take our land from us. We do not go to farm anymore. I bought plantain somewhere the other day” the monarch laments.
Oworhu I, begged the Army to do its best in keeping and maintaining the peace in the area.
“We do not want to be oppressed. We do not them to give us violence and they will not attack us “.
Maj.Gen. Sarham was accompanied by top echelons of the Army as well as the Council Chairmen of Udu and Warri South-West Local Government, Chief Kite Brown and Hon. Tate Tuoyo.
On the side of the Ovie of Udu Kingdom were Chief Ernest Juweto, Hon. J.O.Kpeku JP, Spokesman of the Aladja Community, Chief Ogbe Photo, Mr. Sunday Yomi, Elder Edwin.E.A. Aggreh and Alhaji.D.A. Jewho amongst others.