President Muhammadu Buhari is reported to have signed a presidential proclamation to formally proscribe Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).
Reports also said that the Federal Government was also approaching the court to get a nod to nail IPOB over the group’s involvement in terrorist activities.
According to a national newspaper, the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation confirmed the presidential declaration.
President Buhari was said to have signed the declaration on Sunday before his departure for the 72nd United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York.
Buhari’s decision to sign the proclamation was a fallout of the sharp criticism that followed the declaration of IPOB as a terrorist organisation by the Nigerian Army at the weekend and the group’s proscription by the South-east governors.
By the action of Buhari, the attorney general’s office explained that the presidency had effectively initiated the formal process of proscribing IPOB in accordance with the provisions of the Terrorism (Prevention) Act, 2011.
It also paved the way for the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), Mr Abubakar Malami (SAN) to head to court to give legal backing to the presidential proclamation.
Meanwhile, Senate President Bukola Saraki has joined the South East senators to denounce military action in the region, but the Chief of Army Staff, Gen. Buratai has countered his stand.
Buratai said that the army was performing its constitutional responsibility.
But Saraki insisted that due process should have been followed before the declaration and proscription by the army and South-east governors respectively.
Meanwhile, five northern governors are currently on a peace mission to the South-South and South East following the tension generated by the activities of IPOB.
They have visited Rivers and the Abia States, where they addressed Northerners, telling them to remain calm.
They were Borno State Governor Kashim Shettima, Aminu Tambuwal (Sokoto), Simon Lalong (Plateau), Aminu Masari (Katsina) and Atiku Bagudu (Kebbi).
Abia State Governor Okezie Ikpeazu promised to defend Nigeria’s unity, despite the IPOB agitation.
While Governor Nysom Wike of Rivers State also vowed not to support the disintegration of Nigeria as well as the molestation, intimidation and harassment of any Nigerian and non-Nigerians resident in Rivers state. (NAN)