Home Breaking News Group advises Buhari against war against Ndigbo

Group advises Buhari against war against Ndigbo

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By Chris Njoku, Owerri

Igbo National Movement (INM) has urged President Muhammadu Buhari not to wage new war against Ndigbo.

The group said the President’s recent utterances, describing Southeast zone as a dot in a circle and dismissing of restructuring wildly clamoured by Nigerians as capable of re-opening old wound.

In a communique after its emergency meeting in Owerri, the Imo State capital yesterday and jointly signed by Anthony Okolo, President-Worldwide, Nze Ugo-Akpe Onwuka Vice-President, Onyemuche Mbachu, Secretary, Chief Peter Agba Kalu, National Coordinator (Nigeria) Okoro Benedict-Assistant Coordinator (Nigeria) and Eze Eluchie, Legal Adviser, the group urged President Buhari to rather embrace dialogue rather than his forceful approaches to national and sensitive issues.

According to the communique, any zone or group is legally bound by the Constitution to agitate for freedom provided it’s non-violent, just as it frowned against the use of the military to settle the insecurity challenges in the zone.

“We conclude, therefore, that it seems the life of an Igbo man may be considered by some to be cheaper than the lives of other nationals.  It is as if the government of Nigeria wishes to repent of its “No Victor, No Vanquished” motto and now wishes to wage a new war against Ndigbo, along with the terms of that which was said to have ended more than 50 years ago.

“As Ndigbo are constantly reminded by the language used by the Presidency that we are “vanquished,” “inconsequential” and therefore liable to be encircled and dealt with in a manner inconsistent with our rights as indigenous peoples, the Igbo National Movement has come together in general meeting and resolved to condemn in its entirety the recent militarisation of the Southeast which has resulted in the loss of innocent lives of citizens.

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“We state unequivocally that there is no excuse for the killing of innocent Igbo citizens, in derogation of their Fundamental Human Rights, the Constitution of Nigeria and their rights as Indigenous Peoples within the Federation.

“We believe that dialogue always seems to be the last option explored by the Federal Government in matters pertaining to Ndigbo (Igbo citizens) and that the bloodshed in these last few weeks of madness has done nothing to achieve a pacification of the Southeast, nor has it helped to bring any meaningful change in the security situation in Igbo homelands.

“What it has achieved, is a wanton waste of lives.  Those who should have been protected by the state, now lie in unmarked graves, without trial or due process, at the hands of the same state.

“We find it worrisome that the President of the Federation, after threatening to “deal with Igbos in a language (we) will understand”, in referring to the genocide of the Civil War, where starvation was made a tool of war, has now chosen to repeat the economic blockade of the South-East to make Ndigbo a “dot in a circle.”

“We find it even more worrisome when we realize such language has not been employed to describe militant herdsmen and their sponsors, even while the President has alluded to the fact that these people are not even Nigerian citizens, meaning that non-Nigerians are more worthy of the President’s respect, even more so than his own citizens, so long as those citizens are Igbo.

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“The Igbo National Movement condemns the killings of all citizens, including security agents, and the destruction of government infrastructures in the Southeast. We have pointed out above that we do not believe that the allegations that the perpetrators of these heinous crimes are Igbo hold any merit.

“We therefore demand the immediate release of innocent Igbo arrested by the security forces in this period of chaos. Their only crime is being Igbo in Igbo land.

“We make it clear that Ndigbo as a whole have never expressed widespread support for the Biafran agitation, however, we acknowledge that it is the constitutional right of those individuals to express their democratic rights in a non-violent manner, ” the group stated.

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