From Paul Osuyi, Asaba

After over one month of the brutal killing of 17 officers and soldiers of the Nigeria Army in Okuama, Ughelli South Local Government Area of Delta State, Governor Sheriff Oborevwori on Saturday visited the community for the first time.

Recall that the governor was denied access to the community by security at the wake of the gruesome murder which occurred on March 14, 2024.

The governor who was accompanied by Commander 63 Brigade, Brig. Gen. Unachukwu Ugochukwu, and top government officials, assured that indigenes of the troubled community would safely return, reiterating that innocent citizens would not be made to suffer for what they know nothing about.

Oborevwori informed journalists that due process was followed in the whole incident.

“The people have been buried and the King that was detained has been released yesterday and today I am here to see what happened in Okuama community.

“The Okuama 17 is something that we didn’t expect to happen because it is against our bargain for peace and security which I promised Deltans that we are going to enhance.

“We have been enjoying peace and security since last year until the 14th of March when the four Army officers and 13 soldiers were murdered.

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“They were not just murdered, their bodies were mutilated and we have come here to see what happened.

“Let me again reiterate Mr President’s promise that no innocent person would be victimised and you can see that, from that time till now, there has been no harassment of citizens of this community.

“I have come to see how the innocent people of this community can be reintegrated back with the cooperation of the military.

“We know its a big loss to them but we have to follow due process. The Brigade Commander is with us and the newly posted Commander of 181 Battalion, Lt Col Dabo, is also here with us and its a great synergy,” he said.

He said his administration was doing a lot to effectively resolve the dispute, adding that citizens of Okuama would soon return home.

Continuing, Governor Oborevwori, said: “Let me once again thank Mr President and Commander in Chief, Bola Tinubu, the Chief of Army Staff and the Chief of Defence Staff for their cooperation so far.

“They have been very supportive and they have kept to their promise that innocent people will not be victimised. I want to assure the people of Okuama there is no point running away from your community.

“We are going to bring you back to your community. It’s only those that are involved the military are looking for”.