YENAGOA, Nigeria, June 7 The suspected
mastermind behind an ambush in Nigeria's oil-producing Niger
Delta in April that killed 12 policemen has been arrested, the
military said on Friday.
A police boat escorting people to a funeral in President
Goodluck Jonathan's home state of Bayelsa was attacked on April
5 by armed militants who were trying to kill their former
commander because he was not giving them their share of stipends
due from a government amnesty.
"The suspect before you is Jackson Fabouwei. He is
mastermind of the dastardly act of 5 April," Faroqu Yahaya,
chief of staff of the Niger Delta military joint task force,
"He was arrested on 6 June ... through sound intelligence
gathering efforts. The suspect will be handed over to the police
for further necessary investigation and prosecution."
At the time, the attack raised fears of a return to violent
unrest in the oil-producing Niger Delta, when militants used
used to hit oil installations in raids that at their height in
2006 cut out around half of the OPEC member's crude production.
But the violence has not been repeated, and analysts say the
generous payoffs being received by militant commanders mean the
delta is likely to remain quiet.
The 2009 amnesty halted the unrest, although it has been
replaced by widespread oil theft and kidnapping by pirates off
the coast of the swampy Delta region - criminality seen as
almost as much a security headache as armed militancy.
(Reporting by Tife Owolabi; Writing by Joe Brock; Editing by
Tim Cocks/Mark Heinrich)