03 November 2014, Yenagoa – Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria, MWUN, weekend, shut all marine transportation in Bayelsa State over high rate of killings, kidnappings, attacks and rapes, among other violent crimes by suspected militants and pirates.
President-General of MWUN, Mr. Tony Nted Emmanuel, who disclosed this, lamented that in the last two years, close to 40 innocent Nigerians including union members, had been killed by the militants allegedly being protected by politicians.
He said all efforts by the union to make the state government move against the militants had yielded no positive result, insisting that the union could no longer fold its arms while members and other innocent Nigerians were exposed to danger.
He said: “The union has, since Friday, begun an indefinite strike and shut all marine transport in Beyalsa State until the government is ready to ensure safety of our members and other innocent Nigerians who use marine transport in the state. This state of insecurity has been on since two years ago. At the last count, close to 40 innocent Nigerians, including our members, have been killed; others have been kidnapped while many women have been raped. The activities of these hoodlums who are loyal and patronised by politicians in the state, have been on the increase since two years.
“All efforts to get the government to address the rising insecurity on the waterways in Bayelsa State have yielded no positive result. Just last Friday, when the strike began, the state Commissioner for Transport called our officials in the state and intimated them that the governor was going to meet with them. Unfortunately, as at today (Sunday), nothing has been heard from the government.
“Whatever politics they are playing, it is not our business. We are not politicians, we are workers doing our legitimate business and we expect the government to protect us. We are compiling the names of our members that have been killed, kidnapped or raped by these hoodlums for the public to know the level of insecurity we have been exposed to while doing legitimate business in Bayelsa State.”