Why Okuama/Okoloba Crisis is Great Pain to Us – Governor Oborevwori

Delta State governor, Rt. Hon. Sheriff Oborevwori, Friday, said his administration was sorely pained about recent crisis leading to the killing of some army officers and soldiers at Okuama community in Ughelli South Local Government Area of the state.

Governor Oborevwori stated this at Government House Annex, Warri when he received on a courtesy visit, chairman and members of Board of Inquiry set up by the Defence Headquarters to probe the Okuama Killings.

The governor, who narrated how the state managed the situation, said the state government would do all it could to assist the board in its assignment.

Governor Oborevwori further said that in order to honour the deceased officers and soldiers, he led a top level delegation of members of the State Security Council and State Executive Council to attend the funeral of the slain officers and soldiers in Abuja.

While saying that a transparent investigation should be conducted to fish out the real culprits of the heinous crime, he pleaded that innocent citizens should not be made to suffer any further.

“I am very happy for this meeting taking place here today in Warri. Most people who spoke about the issue did so out of ignorance because they lacked the true knowledge of the facts of what happened. Setting up this Board of Inquiry is a good one.

“In my MORE Agenda, we said we are going to ensure peace and security, and for the first time in a long while, we celebrated Christmas without any hitches and I must thank security agencies in the state for a job well done.

“In Delta State, there are two bodies we don’t play with; the Advisory and Peace Building Council and the Peace Building and Conflict Resolution- because they are doing a lot to ensure enduring peace in the state.

“I told the Secretary to State Government to invite the Okuama/Okoloba people. So, l made it mandatory that the Chairmen of Ughelli South and Bomadi Local Government Councils to be in attendance, the members of the State House of Assembly who are representing the constituencies should also be in attendance and the Presidents- General of the communities should be in attendance.

“That meeting was held on the 7th of February and they signed a peace accord. So, we were not expecting anything negative when the military went there for a peace mission.

“In Delta State, we don’t encourage crisis. So, we want to assure you that which ever information you people want, we will give it to you and we will also come with our position paper to submit to you people before you leave.

“That will also guide you on the role that we have played as a state because if we don’t come with this position paper, you will not know the role that the state has played”, the governor said.

Earlier, Chairman of the Board of Inquiry, Air Vice-Marshal David Ajayi, said the board was in the state to investigate the unfortunate incident that happened at Okuama.

Ajayi said: “We are here as a fact- finding mission and not to apportion blame. We are here to gather facts from security agencies, community leaders and community dwellers.

“This report will also help to ensure healthy communication that will enhance civil-military relations and ensure that economic activities thrive again in the affected communities.”

He called on the governor to assist the board in its inquiry to ensure that relevant stakeholders were invited to give account of what led to the crisis.