Women of Kokori, the country home of Delta suspected kidnap kingpin, Kelvin Oniarah, who was arrested September 25, by a combined team of Department of State Service, DSS, and the army, while staying in a hotel in Port-Harcourt, Rivers State have called for his release.
Despite the expressed wrath of Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan over the alleged support they gave their suspected kidnapper- son, Kelvin, the women maintained that the community was being marginalized as stated by the alleged kidnap kingpin and asked the governor to develop Kokori.
The protest, which went wild, last weekend, started penultimate Saturday when the women returned from the market angry that soldiers allegedly came to upturn their wares, asking why they should sell food items to Kelvin boys, who were fighting government.
They went round the community half naked raining curses on the soldiers that night. The next day, Sunday, the women were joined by members of Liberation Movement of Urhobo People, formed by the alleged kingpin, last month, and they really went fanatical.
The spokesperson of the protesters, Madam Irerevwo Oyokoko, called for the release of Kelvin and the arrested chief priest, Michael Omonigho, insisting that government should attend to his (Kelvin) demand, instead of arresting him and terrorizing the entire community with soldiers.
Noting that indigenes of other communities in the Niger Delta that carried arms against government were granted amnesty, Oyokoko asked why Kelvin’s case was different.
Led by the oldest Kokori woman, they trooped to Isiokolo, drumming, dancing and raining curses on their monarch who they accused of conspiracy.
According to them, since 1961 when oil production started in Kokori, the community has practically nothing to show for it.
Meanwhile, Kokori people in Ghana, last Sunday, decried the invasion of the community by the military under the guise of searching for gang members of Kelvin, calling for withdrawal of the troops.
Leader of the Kokori community in Ghana and public relations officer of Urhobo Progress Union, UPU/ South-South community, Ghana, Mr. David Ukueku, said the entire Kokori people in Ghana were incensed by the invasion.