Iron Fist of the Niger Delta

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Perspective

In the Niger Delta, almost everyone believes in the endless cycle of life.  The ancestors, buried deep in the dark soil or in the undulating water of the lagoon and slow-moving rivers, are alive.  They roam the mangroves and if you look hard enough, you can behold their unblinking gaze in the dark.  They would not abandon their children, for they are part of them.  The struggle, when it comes, is also their own.  So, the Ijaws, confronted with the might of the Nigerian military, paid obeisance to Egbesu, their ancestral deity, and asked for spiritual leadership in battle.

MEND was the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger-Delta and it announced itself, when it did so, with a bang.  Henry Okah (currently in a South African jail for carrying out acts of terrorism in Abuja, Nigeria) was the mastermind, and he found his resources within variegated interests in FNDIC and the disenchantment of the Ijaw youths.  This development was because there was a division…



Source: Thisday Newspaper