By Binebai Princewill
Niger Delta human rights activist, Amb. John Dekawei has appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to consider releasing seized properties of High Chief Government Oweizide Ekpemupolo, popularly known as Tompolo as a birthday gift to Niger Deltans and the Ijaw ethnic nationality in Nigeria.
Amb. Dekawei made the recommendation and appeal on Sunday in Warri while celebrating the birth anniversary of Niger Delta most revered former warlord, High Chief Government Oweizide Ekpemupolo via a statement he personally signed and issued to newsmen, a copy of which was sent to The Liberator Newspapers Worldwide.
While lauding President Muhammadu Buhari for listening to the plights of Niger Deltans, the young human rights activist and advocate of good governance had urged the president to once again show mercy by directing the appropriate agencies to release the seized properties of Tompolo, particularly the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
He said the call have become necessary following the continued seizure of the said properties despite a valid court judgement on the matter.
It would be recalled that a Lagos Division of the Federal High Court on Wednesday July 15th 2020 dismissed all the 40 counts bordering on alleged N34 billion fraud filed by the Federal Government against Global West Vessel Specialist Limited, a company linked to the former Niger Delta militant leader, Government Ekpemupolo, popularly known as Tompolo.
Dekawei wondered, saying “this is 9 months later after the court judgement, the presidency is yet to direct its agencies to release the seized properties. Where is the place of the rule of law in this country”?.
Speaking on the personality of Tompolo, Amb. John Dekawei said since 2009 when the former warlord accepted the Presidential Niger Delta Amnesty Programme, Tompolo has never violated his own side of the deal as he continues to preach peace in his own way.
Dekawei stressed that President Muhammadu Buhari making friend with the foremost Niger Delta leader, Tompolo will make proper sense as it would bring about more economic prosperity in the region and to the country at large.
In his words: “The federal government of Nigeria needs to make genuin peace with Tompolo, he has over time delivered uncommon leadership in sustaining peace in the Niger Delta region and the country at large. ”
John noted that Tompolo’s struggle over time have always been the liberation of the Niger Delta region and her people and not his personal enrichment, adding that he has been witchunted and politically incarcerated for years by the federal government, stressing that the rule of law should be allowed to take full effect on Tompolo’s matter.
He continued that Tompolo also lost his father during the struggle, noting that despites all these alleged provocations, the man has continued to remain peaceful since he has signed a peace deal with the federal Government in 2009.
The young advocate noted that the struggle of Tompolo has brought appreciable level of development to the riverine communities and beyond, adding that lots of hirthrto jobless youths have been engaged in different fora courtesy of his contacts and magnanimity.
In speaking on the importance of forgiveness, Dekawei said even if the presidency seem to have been offended by the actions of Tompolo in the past, they should forgive him for the sake of prosperity in line with Islam and christian religions.
In the Quran, there is a complete surah (chapter) titled At-Tawba, which means “The Repentance”. As with other topics, the act of atoning (for one’s misdeeds) and seeking God’s forgiveness has also been discussed in the Qur’an, and given much importance. For those believers who have wronged themselves, the Qur’an asks them to become repentant, seek Allah’s forgiveness, and make a sincere tawba. It assures them that if they do this, Allah will forgive them, and exonerate them from their misdeeds:
And O ye Believers! turn ye all together towards Allah, that ye may attain Bliss.
— Quran, Sura 24 (Al-Noor), ayah 31
O ye who believe! Turn to God with sincere repentance, in the hope that your Lord will remove from you your ills and admit you to Gardens beneath which Rivers flow…
— Quran, Sura 66 (Al-Tahrim), ayah 08
Surely God loves those who turn much (to Him), and He loves those who purify themselves.
— Quran, Sura 02 (Al-Baqara), ayah 222
The good news is forgiveness on all these levels is possible! Both receiving forgiveness and forgiving others is one of the most important things you will ever do. The Bible is full of verses to help us understand how completely God forgives those who confess and believe in his son Jesus. There are also many wonderful scriptures about forgiving others in the Bible.
Do not live with the burden of unforgiveness any longer. Find freedom through God’s word:
God Forgives Us
1 John 1:9 – If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
Psalm 103:10-14 – He has not punished us as we deserve for all our sins, for his mercy toward those who fear and honor him is as great as the height of the heavens above the earth. He has removed our sins as far away from us as the east is from the west. He is like a father to us, tender and sympathetic to those who reverence him. For he knows we are but dust.
Hebrews 8:12 – For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.
Romans 5:8 – But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Meanwhile, Amb. John Dekawei is the President general of the revered Niger Delta Socio Cultural Group under the aegis of Delta Ijaw Youth Movement for Political Advancement (DIYMPA).
It would be recalled that Amb. John Dekawei is also the chairman cum founder of the John Dekawei Foundation (JDF), a Non Governmental Organisation he has used in transforming the lives of many across the globe.