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Fresh Kidnappings Prompts New Security Measures In The Niger Delta

The government of Rivers state says it is reviewing and implementing new security operations in areas the Niger Delta following the latest kidnappings of two prominent citizens.

Governor Rotimi Amaechi says the new measures will make it impossible for a repeat of what he calls brazen acts by groups seeking greater share of the region's oil wealth. Officials say there will be greater coordination among the military, police and other security agencies to provide a more effective security blanket in the state.

David Iyofor is Media Consultant to Gov. Amaechi.He says the latest kidnappings are a source of grave concern to the governor.

"I can tell you categorically that the kidnappings in giving the governor sleepless nights. I mean before now the governor has done a lot in collaboration with security forces to stem this ugly trend and it is really giving the governor sleepless nights.

He says the new security plans will go further than previous efforts because of the implication of the kidnappings on the state and national economy.

"It is very very extensive, If you saw the Nigerian newspapers today, you'll probably see the results of the governor's new move against this kidnappings. It is very extensive, the governor is discussing extensively and widely. On Wednesday he had meetings, that was the night after Mrs. Daukuro was kidnapped and the research commissioner was kidnapped. He held marathon meeting with all the security agencies in Rivers State. He held one earlier with the police, the commissioner was there were a couple of A-I-G's were there and a couple of other senior officers early in the day and later at night , there was an enlarged meeting with all the security agents . Yesterday, he continued with the meetings. I know the governor is determined, very determined to work and support the security agencies to put this ugly trend of kidnappings to an end".

Iyofor says the government will continue its policy of not negotiating with kidnappers. "The policy still stands because they are criminals. Kidnapping is not part of the Niger Delta story; it has nothing to do with the Niger Delta struggle. Who are this people kidnapping? They are kidnapping Niger Delta indigenes, Mrs. Dakouru is a Niger Delta indigene, so what has that got to do with the struggle. What is happening is criminal and if you have notice, the kidnapping has even gone beyond the Niger Delta".