Bayelsa State Government has warned against alleged attempts by some persons to forcefully take over the leadership of Azuzama Kingdom in the Southern Ijaw Local Government Area of the state.
Niger Delta Trust gathered that since the death of the Ibenanaowei of the Azuzuama Kingdom in 2013, the people have not had a replacement due to conflict of interest by kingmakers in the community.
According to the Amananowei of Ariwei-Ama community, one of the federating communities of Azuzuama, Chief Foncha Ekeuwei-Ariwei, efforts to enthrone a new Ibenanaowei, including the successful review of the Kingdom’s constitution had reached an advanced stage before some disgruntled elements came in’’.
Chief Ekeuwei-Ariwei, who spoke on behalf of the leaders of the five Azuzuama communities, alleged that the activities of the dissident group aided by some security agents were threatening the peace of the area.
He solicited for the state government’s intervention to restore law and order in the kingdom and ensure that due process is followed in the election of a new Ibenanaowei of Azuzuama Kingdom.
During a meeting with leaders of Azuzuama kingdom, the state government and security chiefs, yesterday, Governor Douye Diri warned that his administration would do everything to maintain law and order in the state.
Represented by the Deputy Governor, Senator Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, the governor frowned at reports of unrest in Azuzuama over leadership position, a development which he described as mundane and uncalled for.
He maintained that government would not fold its arms and watch anybody or group of persons take the laws into their hands under any guise to cause insecurity in any community.
While urging the people of Azuzuama to remain peaceful, the governor cautioned those who are seeking to lead, to do so by following due process in the interest of peace and stability for sustainable development and prosperity to thrive in the various communities.
He lauded the leaders of the community for their peaceful disposition and decision to involve the state government and called on all the parties to embrace dialogue as a means of resolving the issue rather than resort to violence.
He assured them that the state government would investigate reports of unrest in the kingdom with a view to ensuring that peace prevails in the area.
The Commander, 16 Brigade Nigerian Army, Yenagoa, Brigadier General E.T Essien and the State Police Commissioner, Mike Okoli denied the deployment of their personnel to support any group in Azuzuama.
They promised to investigate the allegation and assured the government and people of their neutrality to maintain peace and security in Azuzuama and other parts of the state.