There is disturbance in the South East following directives by the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) that the area would be completely shut down on Friday, October 1, 2021.
The separatist group stated that the decision is to display against its rejection by the Federal Government.
October 1 is Nigeria’s independence anniversary celebration. A public holiday is always announced by the Federal Government on this date for Nigerians to celebrate the country’s freedom from the colonial masters.
In a press release by the Media and Publicity Secretary, Emma Powerful on Saturday, IPOB emphasized that there would be no movement in the zone on that day (October 1), calling for strict adherence to the directives to avoid regrets.
It advised world leaders to use the opportunity of the present United Nations General Assembly, UNGA, meeting to converse the sufferings of the “two persecuted nations of Biafra and Ambazonia.
IPOB had on other occasions declared the suspension of the Sit-at-home order but ended up flouting them.
Residents in the region have expressed dissatisfaction with the unlawful group’s plan of closing down the region as it wishes, regretting they have suffered countless pains and hardship since the order started.
The residents In Anambra, stated that the Indigenous People of Biafra should not permit Ndigbo to rebel against it as a result of the incessant sit-at-home orders.
They announced that ‘enough is enough’ noting that what they (IPOB) are presently doing was exactly what SARs did that made the masses to rebel.
A community leader in the state, Chief Alphonsus Okafor, stated that IPOB was biting more they could chew by ordering sit-at-home again on Nigeria’s Independence Day.
According to the elder statesman, “the idea of telling people not to go out all the time is becoming like a child’s play and I don’t think most of the young people who are not their members will continue to stomach it.
“The worst part of it is that they have equally banned Nigerian flag from being hoisted on the day in the Southeast. This is absolute madness
“It will get to a point where the masses will start pointing them one after the other to the security operatives, but it will not be fair to Igbo. The implication of such action is reducing our number.”
Speaking with newsmen, Saturday in Awka, Governor Willie Obiano’s Special Assistant on Community Matters, Comrade Obi Ochije, said the group should act maturely instead of being childish.
He noted that the idea of Biafra was good, the reason, he said Igbo had been respecting their sit-at-home, noting that it was improper for IPOB to announce another sit-at-home on October 1st.
“Ndigbo respect the idea of the pursuit for sovereignty, but telling the people to sit-at-home every now and then is not good
“What they are doing is slowly killing the people by collapsing their economy. They should fix their sit-at-home any day their leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu appears in Court and the people will respect it, but for all the time? It’s not good for Igbo.”
When C Don Adinuba, the State Commissioner for Information and Public Enlightenment, was phoned, he did answer the calls.
But a senior government official who pleaded anonymity, informed Newsmen that IPOB members were simply calling trouble for Ndigbo
According to the source, “those people are taking Ndigbo as people without aim. There’s nothing government plans that doesn’t work. They should have a rethink on this their new move, that’s my advice.”
Also, Residents of Enugu metropolis yesterday portrayed the fresh sit-at-home directive issued by IPOB as a ridiculous act for the fight for the sovereign state of Biafra.
The residents, who spoke with our newsmen in Enugu on Saturday, criticized the often declaration of sit-at-home by the pro-Biafra group.
According to Dr. Chuma Udom, the Executive Director, Centre for Southeast Economic Renaissance (CenSER), “You will agree with me that frequent declaration of sit-at-home by the pro-Biafra group only showed that the group had since run out of ideas over the Biafra agitation.
“IPOB as a group wants us to believe that without Nnamdi Kanu, no other person can come up with a better idea of how to pursue the Biafra agitation? I mean, we cannot continue to stab ourselves and expect our perceived enemy to be bleeding.
“What I’m saying is that this whole thing is looking childish and ridiculous. The way they’re going about this whole thing, they will lose people’s empathy.”
The top Igbo socio-cultural group, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, expressed grief that IPOB is swerving from being the lover of the Igbo progress to inflicting their people with difficulties.
According to the spokesman, Hon. Alex Ogbonnia: “I don’t think the IPOB which Nnamdi Kanu represents, which he epitomises, will like to inflict hardship and injuries on Ndigbo.
“They will be playing into the hands of hoodlums. Even when IPOB suspended their weekly Monday sit-at-home, some hoodlums hijacked it and went on killing, maiming and destroying Igbo property. They will be playing into the hands of the hoodlums.
“They will lose the solidarity and sympathy of the people and the essence of the agitation will become questionable and it will turn out against them and become counter-productive,” Ogbonnia said.
In its response, the Association of South East Town Unions (ASETU) urged the group to devise other ways of demonstrating their civil disobedience because of the consequences on the economy of the region.
According to its spokesman, Collins Opuruzor, “They should reconsider because it does not affect the aggressor in anyway but hurting ourselves. If they could rescind such a declaration, it will be in the best interest of the Igbo people. Of course, Igbo people thrive by their daily bread. They should rescind it and device other ways of registering their civil disobedience.”
Prior to the Saturday announcement by IPOB, a faction of the Ohanaze Ndigbo presided by Chidi Ibeh, said it is dedicated to providing a political solution for the freedom of the IPOB leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu from police custody.
“Any other procedures and protocols including shutting down the southeast for one month, will not be able to get results.
“Sitting at home in protests against the continuous incarceration of Nnamdi Kanu is a nonsensical and preposterous strategy before adversaries of Igbo. Our enemies are excited about the collapse and destruction of the southeast economy through the imbecility and absurdity of Sit at homes,” a communique by the Secretary General, Mazi Okechukwu Isiguzoro said.
“The exponents of Sit at home should be cautious of the regaining consciousness of Ndigbo to defy further directives, as the best approach before the IPOB leadership is to mobilize the disciples of Nnamdi Kanu in millions to take advantage of the October 21st Court trial and massively take over the streets of Abuja peacefully without confrontation with security agencies so that the international community will handle the matter and convince the Federal Government to do the needful.
“If 60 million IPOB members as acclaimed by the leadership can storm Abuja, they will be forced to produce Nnamdi Kanu before the Abuja High Court as sit -at -home is gradually fading away and Igbo are getting back from the dreamland to face reality.
“IPOB should face Abuja and get the required results, as Ndigbo are sympathetic to their causes since the Federal Government are pampering the Boko Haram terrorists and bandits and introduced secret programs for the secret rehabilitation of Boko Haram terrorists but uses full military operations in the South against agitators fighting against the killer herdsmen and government policies that promote nepotism. IPOB will gradually lose Igbo support if they continue to make things difficult for Ndigbo.”