A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and aide to Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State, Joe Igbokwe has warned that the threats by the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) must not be taken lightly.
This is as he declared that the threat by IPOB to remove all Nigerian flags in the southeast on October 1 is equal to a declaration of attack on the sovereignty of Nigeria as a nation.
Naija News recalls the IPOB group, led by Nnamdi Kanu had declared October 1, a day that marks Nigeria’s independence from Britain, a sit-at-home.
This was made known on Saturday in a statement by the group’s spokesperson, Emma Powerful.
The outlawed pro-Biafra group also placed a ban on the Nigerian flag across the South-East zone of the country.
Reacting to the statement, Igbokwe in a post on his Facebook account warned that there is the need to check the excesses of the IPOB group.
He said such threats must not be treated with kid gloves as it portends grave danger to the corporate existence of Nigeria.
According to him, the views of IPOB do not represent that of others in Igbo land and all leaders of the region must rise up to condemn the declaration, adding that any attack on the Nigerian flag is an attack on the nation itself.
The APC chieftain in his reaction via a Facebook post on Sunday titled “A call for peace, tranquility and sanity in Igboland as Nigeria clocks 61,” said, “IPOB’s threat to attack the Nigerian Flag on October 1st 2021 in the South East should not be treated with Kids gloves.
“The sit-at-home order on that special day, an independence day is an affront to the Federal Republic of Nigeria. This is an attack on the corporate existence of Nigeria as a political entity and no Nation big or small will take this threat lightly.
“ACTIONS CARRY CONSEQUENCES!!! The South East Governors, Senators, HORs, South East State Assemblies, the Speakers, Ohaneze Leadership, First Class Traditional Rulers, the Egg Heads, University Teachers, Business Tycoons, Intelligentsia, Market leaders, prominent politicians etc should rise up to check IPOB excesses in Igboland.
“Our people are relocating out of South East to Delta State and some other States for fear of attacks and assaults by heartless IPOB bandits. They have killed Policemen, attacked Police Formations, burnt Police Patrol Vans, killed Soldiers, killed Priests,they have killed our people, looted their shops and countless atrocities which time and space will not permit me to mention here.
“Those who are pushing for this brigandage in the South East are the lowest of the low in Igboland. They do not represent the thinking and aspirations of the vibrant SE citizens.
“I repeat that an attack on Nigeria’s Flag is an attack on Nigeria. The IPOB bandits are consistently ruining the economy of SE with reckless abandon and we are all keeping quiet. This grave silence is not golden.
“The truth that must be told never forgives silence. We cannot continue to maintain a grave silence in the face of this madness in the South East. What we have labored to build since the end of the civil war in 1970 is being destroyed gradually in our own very eyes by people who have nothing to show in terms of any business in Igboland. This is unacceptable. This is unbelievable in the 21st Century.”
Igbokwe however admitted that the southeast has been marginalized by the central government of Nigeria for many years but added that the way out is not confrontation but dialogue.
He added’ “I agree that Igbo Nation has witnessed systemic, official, organized, structural, and deliberate marginalization since the end of the Civil War in 1970. We get the least of anything that is being shared in this Coutry. And yet Igbo are not the last among the three ethnic groups in Nigeria. A school of thought says that all acts of indignity against human persons, against a tribe debase the perpetrators more than the victims.
“Let there be Social justice, equity and FairPlay. When there is justice the people are happy and when they are happy they release their energies to work for the good of the commonwealth and then we have progress.
“Let us seek dialogue instead of confrontation and brigandage.”
Meanwhile, Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike has lamented that Nigeria as a country has fallen well below expectations even as the country prepares to celebrate its 61st independence anniversary.
Wike on Sunday while bemoaning the huge leadership failure in the country said perhaps the only thing Nigeria can celebrate is its name which continues to exist.
He observed that insecurity in many parts of the country, as well as economic hardship being experienced by the people, leaves a sour taste in the mouth as the country marks another independence celebration.