Women under the aegis of Ijaw Women Liberation Movement have threatened to protest nude over the killing of innocent voters in the state if nothing is done urgently.
The women who dragged perpetrators of violence during the governorship election in Bayelsa state to the National Human Right Commission, said that people of the state have the right to freely vote for the candidate of their choice, without harassment and intimidation.
In a statement issued by the women leader, Chief Ebebi Agnes, where they threatened to protest naked, the women described the actions of the military as an infringement on the right of the citizens of Bayelsa state, criticising security operatives for failing to protect the people, particularly the women from attacks by political thugs and criminals.
“The Ijaw women wish to state emphatically that the conduct of the military during the unconcluded elections, which saw such a respected institution colluding with known common criminals in the creeks to manipulate the electoral process, is sad and sends a very dangerous signal to the advancement of our democracy.
“We have also resolved not to allow the killing and harassment of the people of Bayelsa state as a result of the election wherein the law enforcement agents were watching, to go unaddressed, by the Human Right Commission, with a view of seeking justice for the dead and protecting the living who are still vulnerable to such barbaric conduct in future elections in Bayelsa or elsewhere in the country,” the statement read in part.
According to the Ijaw women, the military’s actions proved that they are incompetent and unprofessional. The women wondered how operatives could watch with indifference while political thugs killed law-abiding citizens who were out to exercise their franchise.
Addressing President Muhammadu Buhari, the group reminded him that it is the responsibility of the government to protect the citizens as guaranteed by the Constitution.
“We are peace loving in Bayelsa and will not allow the desperation to hijack power by some greedy individuals, truncate the peace that has been enjoyed in our state over the years.
“We are hereby calling on all the people of Bayelsa, particularly the women, to arise and resist the tyranny that the military occupation of our land during the election brought and be prepared until the conclusion of the process on a date, to be set by INEC for elections to hold in Southern Ijaw local government.
“We are determined to pursue this to a logical conclusion and will not hesitate to nakedly protest any further attempt to militarise, what ordinarily should be a civil process in our state,” the statement added.
It could be recalled that the state Governor, Seriake Dickson, had set up a judicial commission of inquiry to investigate the violence and breach of peace that occurred before and after the governorship election in the state.