A hitherto peaceful 46th birthday celebration organised in absentia for former militant warlord, Chief Government Ekpemupolo also known as Tompolo, on Wednesday, at Okuemi Hotel in Uvwie Local Government Area of Delta State, turned awry as some miscreants invaded the venue making participants to scamper for safety.
“At the peak of the event, there was commotion as some aggrieved youths rushed into the event hall destroying things.
“There was smashing of bottles here and there as people were seen flying over the fence to escape, and some high dignitaries were escorted to safety.
“But the situation was later brought to normalcy by security offices who shot into the air to disperse the hoodlums,” an eyewitness to the event said.
Meanwhile, Niger Delta Security Watch Organization and the Ijaw People Development Initiative (IPDI) on Wednesday called on the Federal Government to withdraw all graft charges against former militant, Chief Government Ekpemupolo also known as Tompolo in the interest of peace and justice.
President of the groups, Dickson Bekederemo and Comrade Austin Ozobo made the call during the 46th birthday ceremony of Tompolo.
Bekederemo argued that Tompolo was innocent of all the charges leveled against him by the Federal Government, adding that the Federal Government needed Tompolo more than he needed the government.
He accused perceived enemies of the Niger Delta as enemies behind the travails of the former warlord.
Tompolo, he stated further, fought for the interest of the impoverished and marginalized Niger Delta people and worked for the security and unity of Nigeria since he embraced Amnesty.
“He ensured that pipelines were protected and assured Hausa people that nobody would attack them should Jonathan lose the presidential election and it was so.
“I want to appeal, whatever charges the Federal Government has filed against Tompolo in the interest of justice should be withdrawn,” Bekederemo stated.
Tompolo is wanted for alleged theft of funds belonging to the Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA). A federal high court in Lagos has issued a bench warrant of arrest on the former militant.