Nigerian Army Declares Eight Wanted in Connection with Killing of 17 Soldiers in Delta State

The Nigerian Army has issued a declaration naming eight individuals wanted in connection with the tragic killing of 17 soldiers in the Okuama community of Delta State.

According to an official announcement made on Thursday via the Nigerian Army’s official X account, the suspects comprise seven men and one woman.

The list of individuals declared wanted includes Akevwru Daniel Omotegbono, Prof Ekpekpo Arthur, Andaowei Dennis Bakriki, Igoli Ebi (the only female), Akata Malawa David, Sinclear Oliki, Clement Ikolo Oghenerukevwe, and Reuben Baru.

Background to Okuama Killings:

The suspected orchestrator of the attack, a militant leader, and his associates, currently evading capture, appear to have their base of operations in Igbomotoru, a riverside community in the Southern-Ijaw Local Government Area of Bayelsa State.

The Nigerian Army has expanded its search for the fugitives, extending its reach to Port-Harcourt, Rivers State, where three individuals were apprehended last Tuesday in connection with the soldiers’ killings.

The hunt for the perpetrators has widened across Delta, Bayelsa, and Rivers states, with potential expansion to other Niger-Delta states and beyond, fueled by suspicions that the motive behind the attack transcends a mere land dispute between Okuama and Okoloba in the Bomadi Local Government Area.

Many insiders suggest divergent interests in oil bunkering as a driving force behind the incident.

The Chief of the Defense Staff, General Christopher Gwabin Musa, has issued directives to track down the culprits, underscoring the connection between the attack and efforts to curb illegal oil activities in the area.

Musa’s remarks imply a premeditated scheme to eliminate Lt. Col. Ali, who was staunchly committed to curbing illicit activities, including oil theft.

However, questions linger regarding the Army’s response, particularly concerning the targeting of Okuama civilians and the destruction of their community.

The Army has acknowledged the existence of a viral video featuring a militant leader admitting involvement in the killings, emphasizing the importance of community cooperation in apprehending the perpetrators.

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