We’ll talk with militants, say Ijaw leaders

Some leaders of the Ijaw community in Lagos State say they are taking steps to halt the criminal activities linked to militants from the Niger Delta region.

Some communities in Lagos and Ogun states are being attacked by gunmen suspected to be Ijaws staying in the creeks.

Speaking for the Ijaws in Lagos on Thursday, a former president of the Izon Community, Lagos State, Regent Youmor, in a statement, said the Ijaw leaders were set to douse the tension.

He said, “We are worried about the spate of criminal activities and the colouration given to it in the reports. The Izon community in Lagos is not taking the reports and the feedback we get lightly.

“We are ready to collaborate with our Yoruba brothers and leaders, as well as security agencies, to ensure that criminals masquerading as militants are fished out and dealt with according to the laws of the land.

“We frown at it when a particular ethnic group appears targeted for negative and biased reports. We are a peaceful and peace-loving people, who abhor all forms of criminality, whether in Lagos or anywhere else.”

Youmor, who is also vice-chairman of the Police Community Relations Committee in the Ajeromi Ifelodun Local Government Area of Lagos State, said a friendly football match would be played between the Ijaw and their Yoruba hosts on Saturday, August 6, in the state.

“Football, like any other sport, is a unifying force. We want to use the friendly game to foster better relationship with the Yoruba, who have been very accommodating and hospitable. Our leaders in Lagos are in support of this initiative,” he added.

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