Former President of the Movement for the Survival of Ogoni People (MOSOP), Barrister Ledum Mitee has declared that Ogoni people have evolved from a position of struggles and sad historical injustices, to one of resilience, progress and recognition.
Speaking while receiving Ogoni people at his residence in Port Harcourt during the annual Candlelight Procession held in memory of Ken Saro-Wiwa and eight other Ogoni leaders, Mitee pronounced a stirring message of triumph and resilience, reminiscing about the struggles and historical injustices the Ogoni people endured.
“Ogonis have come from zero to hero,” he proclaimed, acknowledging the remarkable evolution from a past marred by strife and sorrow to a present marked by progress, fortitude, and global recognition.
Commending the younger generation for their unwavering dedication to commemorating the sacrifice made by Saro-Wiwa and others, Mitee expressed his profound gratitude.
“Every night of November 9, you do the candlelight procession in remembrance of those people who put their lives down so that Ogoni becomes a better place for all of us,” he remarked emotionally.
Reflecting on his own survival during a perilous period, Mitee acknowledged the significance of passing down the lessons of the struggle to the succeeding generations.
“God made me be alive so that we can revert to you people those lessons about the struggle and what we wanted for our place,” he expressed with solemn gratitude.
As the gathering resonated with the melodic chants of the Ogoni Anthem, encapsulating their values and aspirations, Mitee entrusted the younger generation with a vital message. “We wanted Ogoni to become the best place that can ever be.
We have handed over the baton to you people, always giving you the support,” he emphasized, urging them to uphold peace and eschew violence in their pursuit of progress.
“Ken and the others were not people of violence. They were people of peace,” Mitee emphasized, underlining the essence of using intellect and peaceful means in their pursuit. He expressed pride in the transformation of the Ogoni identity, noting, “Many years ago, when you called Ogoni, there wasn’t respect for that name. But today, anywhere in the world, people want to even claim to be Ogoni.”
“We have come from zero to hero, a feat not easily achieved by one group of people in a record time,” Mitee acknowledged, urging the assembly to pass on the baton of progress to future generations.
“Those who died did not die in vain. We will birth a better place for our people,” he affirmed, concluding with a heartfelt blessing for Ogoni.
Mitee’s resounding message echoed through the gathering, resonating with hope, determination, and a shared commitment to a brighter future for the Ogoni people.
The Candlelight Procession served not only as a remembrance of the sacrifices made but also as a testament to the resilience and evolution of the Ogoni community from adversity to empowerment.