The people of Ogoni, under the auspices of the Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP) have sworn to resist attempts by the federal government of Muhammadu Buhari to size about 41 hectares of their land for the purpose of building a maximum prison and a modern cemetery.
President of MOSOP, Pyagbara Legborsi said in a statement that his people will resist the plan. According to him, the federal government's plan was a mockery to the Ogoni people.
“MOSOP wishes to state categorically that we vehemently condemn and is opposed to this plan being hatched by the federal government against the Ogoni people. This action is a demonstration of crass insensitivity and a total disdain for the Ogoni people by the Buhari-led administration.
“It is so unfortunate that while we lament that the biggest social event these days in Ogoniland are only burial ceremonies occasioned by the scientifically proven unprecedented pollution of Ogoni caused by reckless exploitation, we deeply bemoan the failure of the federal government to institute a proper clean-up and remediation of Ogoni environment to halt the increasing death of our people rather than being served with a new plot of a devious arrangement of prison and cemetery.
“MOSOP is appalled by the sequence of these events which gives a gory picture of a broader plot to invade and occupy Ogoniland for possible resumption of oil production. First, it started last year with the army protected laying of pipelines across Ogoniland, followed by the dubious and despicable attempts at resumption of oil production with companies fighting over the Ogoni Oil Bloc causing crisis in the area and now the proposed building of a maximum security prison facility and cemetery for the intended mass detention and mass burial of Ogoni people that will be resulting from the protests that will greet this plot against our people.
“We want to stress that this plan to build a maximum security prison facility and modern cemetery in Ogoni would never be acceptable to our people because we see this as a broader attempt to suppress the people and forcefully begin oil and gas exploration in the area without any constructive engagement and discussion with the Ogoni people.
“MOSOP wishes to reiterate to the Federal government of Nigeria that what the Ogoni people want from the government now is the appropriate and fast-paced clean-up and restoration of Ogoniland and not the building of maximum security prison facilities. We declare to the government of Nigeria that what we want now is the deliberate commitment to investment and sustainable development of Ogoni such as the building of the long approved Industrial parks in the area and not the building of cemeteries.
“Instead of giving us what we want, the government has concluded plans to build maximum security prison facility and cemetery. If the idea is to suppress the people's will to resist the government and her oil industry collaborators, then it is a miscalculation. We will resist it with the last drop of our blood.”