IPOB, MASSOB mourn Izuogu

From Stanley Uzoaru, Owerri and Ogbonnaya Ndukwe, Aba

The Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and a group of Igbo lawyers have listed ways of ending the current security challenges plaguing the South-East region.

In its view, IPOB said a collaboration between the body and the governors of the five South East states could bring an end to the insecurity in the zone.

Recent security challenges in the area include attacks at Nnewi in Anambra State, torching of the palace of traditional rulers, killing of six women at Owerriebieri and the destruction of the country home of President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Professor George Obiozor, among others.

IPOB denied involvement in the incidents and accused politicians of being behind the atrocities. The group vowed to hunt down and name the sponsors of the criminal acts.

This was contained in a statement released by the media and publicity secretary of the group, Emma Powerful in Owerri on Friday.

It reads: “We wish to reiterate once again to Biafrans, friends of Biafra and lovers of freedom, that IPOB has no hands in the criminality and insecurity being perpetrated in Biafra territory by imported hoodlums, dissidents and wicked politicians. Those behind this barbarity are not IPOB members or ESN operatives.

“These atrocities are witnessed more in the region where politicians are fighting themselves for selfish reasons.

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“IPOB has been pursuing the freedom for the people of former Eastern region and Midwestern regions since nine years without involving in any act of criminality but some people in their desperation to blackmail IPOB and Nnamdi Kanu, these dissidents and unfortunate people claiming they are working for Mazi Nnamdi Kanu emerged with their evil agenda and their emergence of these criminals has turned our region into a very dangerous situation because some unscrupulous politicians are behind and sponsoring them.

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“We also condemn the numerous abductions, car snatching, raping and attacks on so many institutions in our land. We strongly condemn the recent attacks on Nnewi South LGA, the burning of the country home of Ohaneze Ndigbo President, Professor George Obiozor in Awo mmamma Imo State and the attack on the palace of HRH Igwe Anayo Obika of Ezinfite  Nnewi South. Those behind these devilish acts will regret their actions. 

“We are urging the governors and other politicians to join hands with IPOB under Mazi Nnamdi Kanu to stop the unnecessary waste of lives in our region because it might turn against you tomorrow. 

“IPOB has no business with unknown gunmen, and we will soon expose those behind the monster. We will expose those behind the killings in the whole land of Biafra in no distance future.”

Meanwhile the Igbo Lawyers Association (ILA) counselled members of IPOB to embrace peace and dialogue and end any form of skirmishes in the South East in the interest of their people.

ILA also urged them to reconsider their stance on the renewed enforcement of the Monday sit-at- home aimed at drawing international attention to the plight of the Igbo nation in Nigeria. They noted that the situation, with its attendant wave of destruction of infrastructure across the zone, was destroying the economy.

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Chairman of ILA, Chief Chuks Muoma, a Senior Advocate of  Nigeria (SAN) told Saturday Sun that supporters of IPOB leader, Nnamdi Kanu should accept the offer by Anambra State Governor, Prof Chukwuma Soludo, to grant amnesty to those involved in destruction of lives and property generally called “unknown gunmen.”

He further urged them to embrace the peace panel set up by the governor, made up of eminent Igbo sons and daughters, to discuss with the aggrieved groups and individuals with a view to finding lasting solutions to the problems.

He noted that war and acrimony, were never better ways of settling disputes and commended the group for calling for a referendum over the Biafran question. But, Mouma expressed sadness on the serious threat that the sit-at-home enforcement which had been hijacked by hoodlums and miscreants, was posing to the social and economic well-being of the people of the region.

“Sit-at-home is no longer necessary as the group had made its desire to see Nnamdi Kanu released and marginalisation of Ndigbo in Nigeria, known to the outside world.

“They should allow people to move about freely to do their businesses on Mondays, in order to feed their families.

The elder statesman posited that there were more than 30 pro-Biafra groups beside the IPOB, across the South-East zone, adding that the Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB), led by Chief Ralph Uwazuruike, had remained steadfast in maintaining its non-violence stance, while continuing to represent the Igbo Biafra cause in the United Nations nativity events.

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He urged IPOB members to toe the line of non-violence in its efforts to achieve set goals of helping to set Ndigbo free from marginalisation.

“I advise our young men in the IPOB to eschew violence and uphold the tenets the group was known for in the past – that of non violence.

“Our people now live in fear as we hear of destruction of lives and property in one location or another daily, while we are not free to go out to fend for our families, due to conflicting sit-at-home enforcement directives and their being cancelled or renewals.

“They are affecting the economy negatively and people are suffering. So, I plead with them to see reason and embrace peace, for our people to live without fear,” he said.

But elder statesman and Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Chief Mike Ahamba was not too sure the security challenge would end anytime soon.

“Until those behind this ungodly activity of cutting our noses to spite our faces realise that these criminal acts are hurtful to Ndigbo and no one else, an end is not  in sight,” he declared.


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