BY EMMA AMAIZE
WARRI ‚Äî THE 12 suspected pirates killed, weekend, in a gun battle with the Nigerian Navy, have been identified as recalcitrant militants of the defunct Niger Delta Liberation Front, NDLF, formed by ex-militant leader, the late ‚ÄúGeneral‚Äù John Togo, who refused to embrace the amnesty.
A top official of the disbanded group, told Vanguard: ‚ÄúIf you remember, when we surrendered arms, the Secretary to the Delta State Government, Mr. Ovuozorie Macaulay, noted that security information indicated that the group did not surrender all its arms.
‚ÄúHe is very correct, not all the arms were brought, one of the leaders kept the arms and it was these arms that he handed over to these boys, who refused to embrace amnesty, they were robbing people in the creeks.
‚ÄúWe told them that militancy was over and they cannot hide under it to commit crimes, they refused to listen. You can see where it had landed them, they are all John Togo boys, I regret to disclose this, but that is the truth.
‚ÄúMy advice is that the said leader of the disbanded group, who armed the boys should disarm them and hand over whatever was remaining to the government,‚Äù he added.
Over 120 militants of the defunct NDLF surrendered arms to the state government, last December, but some others, who were in possession of a large cache of munitions refused to surrender and went into piracy.