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Friday, 30 June 2017

Latest Biafra Update: ‘Can Kanu lead Igbos to war?’

It is reported that Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) leader Nnamdi Kanu came under fire from many quarters yesterday for his belligerency, particularly his call for the boycott of the November governorship election in Anambra State.

He has also been threatening that unless a referendum is organised to enable the Igbo determine whether they should have Biafra, the Southeast will boycott the 2019 elections.
Imo State Governor Rochas Okorocha, Ohanaeze Ndigbo and politicians chided the separatist advocate.
The Ijaw Youth Council also threatened action should Kanu disparage former President Goodluck Jonathan again.
Okorocha who spoke at the State House in Abuja said Kanu does not represent or speak for the Igbo, describing him as a young man seeking relevance.
“Kanu, a young man seeking relevance, agitating for whatever he believes in, what he stands for must be treated separately from the entire Igbo nation.
“He should be treated as a young man agitating and seeking for relevance, these are two different issues. And he can ride on the back of supposed Igbo marginalization which has been said is not right, and ride on that sentiments and push his agenda but that
does not mean that the entire Igbos are speaking with him.
The question is does Nnamdi Kanu have the capacity to lead Igbo to war? Or lead me and the governors to war? So I will stand now and Nnamdi Kanu will tell me stand up let’s go to war? So, sometimes we overdramatised the issue just to make a big deal out of it and that has been the big challenge.
“Like the gentleman that spoke for the Arewa youths, and these are not more than 17 young men speaking for millions of Arewa youths and it doesn’t make sense because if you ask any Arewa youth now if he is part of this he will tell you no.
“I was in Chatham House and I remember how I was attacked by the IPOB boys when I was delivering my lecture. They walked up to me and they were shouting and I said calm down and the young man has never visited Nigeria. So it is our duty to call our younger ones to order but I want to assure Nigerians that they should not see that as a break but agitation given what they perceived that the South East has been neglected over time politically, economically, socially and all that.
“Their roads are impassable, you cannot pass Port Harcourt road, Enugu road, Aba Road, Bayelsa road and all the roads. You can hardly see federal government presence in the South East, all the things you see are self-made things. Even the Onitsha bridge has been a theoretical talk, fabrications which does not represent reality.
“So, he speaks his own and joins it to our issues and it now looks like a nationwide thing. That is not the issue.
“We have called for unity and have agreed that we will remain united. Very soon, some of us have taken it upon ourselves to reach out to this young men talk to them. We must understand that our young men are frustrated, if they are as comfortable as we are, they will not be able to say those.
Ohaneze Ndigbo said Kanu has no right to stop the Anambra governorship election.
Its president, Dr John Nwodo, described the IPOB leader’s statement as provocative, misleading and unproductive.
He said Kanu’s statement was against the agreement he reached with Ohaneze Ndigbo when he visited him, adding that the IPOB leader had breached the agreement with Ohaneze without consultation.
Nwodo and his executive council members spoke during a visit to the Anambra State House of Assembly yesterday as part of its sensitisation in the South East. Speaker Rita Maduagwu, lawmakers and former National Chairman of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Chief Victor Umeh, attended.
Nwodo said:  “News that reached us in the past few days that Nnamdi Kami, had declared that there will be no election in Anambra in November is shocking and disturbing. I hereby countermand that declaration as President General of Ohaneze
“Whereas Ohaneze understands the marginalisation and unfair treatment of Igbos which have given rise to self-determination movements in Igboland, leaders of these movements must not arrogate to themselves the supreme leadership of Igboland. Statements of the kind credited to Nnamdi Kanu are provocative, misleading and unproductive”
“Why should Anambra people be denied the opportunity to choose their own leader? Why should any of us not from Anambra, no matter how highly placed, descend to the arena and dictate for Anambra people when to vote, whether to vote or who to vote for?
“Anambra, nay Igbos, are still part and parcel of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Yes, we are not happy with our treatment in Nigeria”
“Yes, some of us want Biafra. Yes, some of us prefer a restructured Federal Republic of Nigeria. But the fact remains that we are still part and parcel of the present Federal Republic of Nigeria, bound by its laws, no matter how repressive or unjust”
Umeh said it was only the people who do not have Igbo blood in them that would allow anybody to tell them what goes on in the society today, adding that the current Ohaneze was making Ndigbo proud.
Special Adviser to Governor Willie Obiano on legislative matters, Chief Chidozie Ezeugwa, condemned Kanu’s statement saying the government of Anambra state under Obiano was committed to the Igbo cause and would continue to do everything to support Ohaneze’s interest in anything in protecting Ndigbo in the country.
Some politicians have also condemned Kanu’s call for a boycott of the Anambrapoll.
They said the call was capable of derailing democracy in the state and expose the people to anarchy.
Chief Sam Oraegbunam, Chairman of Hope Democratic Party (HDP), Anambra chapter, said although Kanu’s call for re-positioning of Nigeria was popular, he must not use it to cause confusion in Anambra.
The Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) Worldwide has declared that further attack on former President Jonathan by Kanu, would be met with appropriate sanctions from Ijaw youths.
IYC through its Spokesman Daniel Dasimaka, described as uncharitable and disrespectful, Kanu’s comments on ex-President Jonathan.
The umbrella organisation of Ijaw youths said: “It is quite ironic and appalling that anyone will say ex-President Jonathan did nothing for the Southeast, when it is common knowledge in both informed and not-so-informed circles in Nigeria that the Southeast benefited even more than the Southsouth under Dr. Jonathan. It is on record that under the then President Jonathan, rehabilitation and expansion works were done on the Sam Mbakwe International Cargo Airport (SMICA), Owerri, Imo State, which he granted an international airport status.
“In terms of appointment, Dr. Jonathan appointed the first female Comptroller-General of Immigration, Mrs. Rose Chinyere Uzoma (an Igbo). He also appointed the first Southeast Chief of Army Staff, Maj.-Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika and first Southeast Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Ogbonnaya Onovo, among others.
“We are calling on the true Igbo leaders to caution Nnamdi Kanu and to bridle his tongue, lest his unguarded rhetoric may strain the good relationship the Igbo and the Ijaw nation, and by extrapolation, the Southsouth and Southeast geopolitical zones, have enjoyed over the years.”

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