Some ex-militant leaders in the Niger Delta region have expressed worry over illegal arms stockpile by politicians in the area ahead of the February general elections.
This was contained in a statement by the group’s spokesman Godstime Ogidigba, which was made available to newsmen in Benin on Thursday.
Ogigba’s group, under the aegis of “Ex-Agitators Leadership Forum’’ said it had information on some locations where the arms were allegedly kept.
It said the aim of some politicians was to unleash terror and mayhem against political opponents; and also to rig the elections.
The ex-agitators’ spokesman, however, advised all ex-militants in the region not to allow themselves to be used as thugs by desperate politicians to undermine the elections.
Ogidigba noted that what the region currently needed was sustainable peace and development.
“Most politicians have used the festive period as an avenue to smuggle in illegal firearms and ammunition into the region as part of their evil plans for the 2019 general polls.
“We have resolved to carefully trace the locations where they are kept, and after thorough information gathering, we will expose the politicians behind the criminal act to the whole world.
“We want to use this medium to advise our brothers in the Niger-Delta region, especially the ex-agitators and those who surrendered their arms to the Federal Government but are yet to be captured in the amnesty programme to be patient.
“They should not allow themselves to be used as political thugs during the forthcoming elections as there is still room for them to be absorbed into the scheme.
“We urge Niger Delta politicians and stakeholders to abide by the rules of the Electoral Act to ensure hitch-free, fair and credible elections in the region.
“As the ex-agitator’s leadership forum in the Niger Delta cannot afford the continued to loss of lives of our brothers and loved ones during elections as was the experience in previous elections,’’ he said.