The Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) has condemned in its entirety the increasing rate of sea piracy and insecurity on the waterways of Rivers State, calling on the government to beef up security to save the lives and properties of armless citizens.
The IYC also warned hoodlums and all criminals to vacate the waterways as it would no longer be business as usual.
Rising from a security summit held in Port Harcourt, the body directed all zones to set up tactical committees that would fish out the hoodlums to chart a way for peace and security along the waterways and the riverine communities.
According to a communiqué handed to newsmen after the meeting convened by the IYC leadership, the federal and state governments should intensify efforts at security the lives of men, women and children who travel on the waterways, and added that the constant harassment of innocent citizens was worrisome.
“Failure to rid the waterways of Rivers and Akwa Ibom States of criminals by the government will force the council to shut all forms of movement along the waterways”, the communiqué declared and charged all IYC zones in the state to contribute their quota towards the fight against sea piracy as part of their corporate social responsibility.
Addressing the summit, a frontline leader of the IYC, Chief (Alhaji) Asari Dokubo decried the incessant occurrence of sea piracy on the waterways, pointing out that “90 percent of the problem of insecurity in the state was created by us because we allow certain vices to creep into our struggle”.
Stressing the need for people to secure their communities, the former Niger Delta freedom fighter condemned illegal crude oil refining operations alias kpo fire, and noted that it had killed a lot of people through its inherent danger.
Commenting on the suspended RUGA scheme by the federal government, he said “suspending RUGA is a lie. Buhari is enriching our enemies to fight us, so it is high time we stood up and defended ourselves.”