His crime was that he was said to have distributed a Christian tract which Sheik Pantami had said blasphemed Islam and Prophet Mohammed.
In the wake of the unnerving stories about the support the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Isa Pantami, gave to Islamic extremists in his past comments, a new revelation has emerged of how, as the Chief Imam of the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University (ATBU), Bauchi mosque, his preaching directly led to the brutal murder of a 400-level student, Sunday Achi, who was the leader of the ECWA Student Ministries (ESM) on the campus.
His crime was that he was said to have distributed a Christian tract which Sheik Pantami had said blasphemed Islam and Prophet Mohammed.
That was on December 9, 2004.
According to Niche online, the story was that Achi was dragged out from his room by Muslim fundamentalists at the prompting of Pantami, taken to a remote location within the school premises where he was stoned to death.
But according to the father of the late student, Prof. Samuel Achi, in Kaduna, his son was strangled to death inside the mosque where Pantami held court, not stoned.
“One thing I know that you people (media) got wrong was that my son was not stoned to death. He was strangled inside the mosque and they threw the corpse outside the university mosque,” he said.
He insisted that there was nothing blasphemous in the tract his son and his colleagues shared that should warrant a death sentence.
Achi narrated how a former governor of Kaduna state helped in retrieving his son’s corpse from Bauchi for burial in Kaduna by liaising with the then governor of Bauchi State, Adamu Muazu.
Many Nigerians have called for the sacking or resignation of Pantami after some comments he made some years ago came into light.
“We are all happy whenever unbelievers are killed,” Pantami once said as an Islamic scholar and cleric.
He also hailed Osama Bin Laden, who orchestrated the terrorist attacks on United States soil on September 11, 2001, saying the terrorist “is a better Muslim than myself.”
Pantami once also condemned Muslims who took up government positions, saying he would never join politics or take up a role in government.
The Federal Government says the reported decision of the United Kingdom to grant asylum to “persecuted” members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) is disrespectful of Nigeria as a nation.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, also said that the decision amounted to sabotaging the fight against terrorism and generally undermining Nigeria’s security. Fielding questions from Newsmen on Tuesday in Abuja, Mohammed said the decision is unacceptable to Nigeria. “Let me say straight away that this issue is within the purview of the Honourable Minister of Foreign Affairs and I am sure he will handle it appropriately. “But as the spokesman for the Federal Government of Nigeria, I will say that if indeed the report that the UK will grant asylum to supposedly persecuted IPOB and MASSOB members is true, then something is wrong somewhere. “Against the background of the fact that IPOB is not only proscribed but also designated as a terrorist organisation here in Nigeria, the UK’s decision is disrespectful of Nigeria as a nation. “The decision amounts to sabotaging the fight against terrorism and generally undermining Nigeria’s security. “It is not only unconscionable, but it is also inexplicable,’’ he said. The minister said that there had recently been heightened attacks against security agencies in the South East Zone. He said IPOB had been fingered as being behind the attacks in spite of its denials. “For the UK to choose this time to give succour to IPOB beggars belief and calls to question the UK’s real intention.
“If we could go down the memory lane, what the UK has done is like Nigeria offering asylum to members of the IRA before the 1998 Good Friday Peace Agreement,’’ he said. NAN reports that the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) had released new guidelines to its decision-makers on how to consider and grant asylum applications by members of Biafran secessionist groups. In the guidelines, asylum is to be granted to “persecuted” members IPOB, a group that Nigeria had designated as a terrorist organisation.
Also in the guidelines, asylum is to be granted to the Movement for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra . (PM News)
The UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) has released new guidelines to its decision makers on how to consider and grant asylum applications by members of Biafran secessionist groups, TheCable can report.
Asylum is to be granted to “persecuted” members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), which has been designated as a terrorist organisation by the Nigerian government, and the Movement for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB).
IPOB was formed in 2012 by Nnamdi Kanu and is believed to be an offshoot of MASSOB, which was founded in 1999 by Ralph Uwazuruike.
Both are campaigning for the secession of mainly the south-east but also several other ethnic nationalities from Nigeria.
In the just-released ‘Country Policy and Information Note Nigeria: Biafran secessionist groups’ seen by TheCable, the UKVI, a division of the Home Office, directed its decision makers to consider if a person “who actively and openly supports IPOB is likely to be at risk of arrest and detention, and ill-treatment which is likely to amount to persecution”.
According to the guidelines, the decision makers “must also consider if the [Nigerian] government’s actions are acts of prosecution, not persecution. Those fleeing prosecution or punishment for a criminal offence are not normally refugees. Prosecution may, however, amount to persecution if it involves victimisation in its application by the authorities”.
An example of persecution, the UKVI said, is “if it is the vehicle or excuse for or if only certain groups are prosecuted for a particular offence and the consequences of that discrimination are sufficiently severe. Punishment which is cruel, inhuman or degrading (including punishment which is out of all proportion to the offence committed) may also amount to persecution”.
They are also to “consider each case on its facts to determine if the person is likely to be of interest to the [Nigerian] government and whether this is for the legitimate grounds of prosecution which is proportionate and non-discriminatory”.
BURDEN OF PROOF
The onus is on the applicants to demonstrate that they will be “at risk of persecution or serious harm” in Nigeria, according to the guidelines.
In particular, the decision makers are to consider each case on its facts, taking into account: profile, size, and organisation of the group/organisation to which the person belongs and its activities whether a person in the UK would wish to continue their activism if returned to Nigeria (if not, why not) whether the group/organisation has a presence in Nigeria as well as outside of the country and any evidence that it is being monitored by the government person’s profile and political activities (including those online) and relevant documentary or other evidence profile and activities of family members past treatment. The UK acknowledges that the Nigerian government has a responsibility to maintain law and order, “to prevent and protect the public against acts of violence”.
It said where supporters or members of MASSOB or IPOB “have incited or used violence to disrupt public order, the government may have legitimate grounds to arrest and prosecute those people”.
“However, where the government has arrested and detained persons who, for example, peacefully participate in demonstrations and has then charged them with treason or the person is subjected to periods of detention in degrading or inhuman conditions, such treatment is unlikely to be fair or proportionate, and is likely to amount to persecution,” the guidelines noted.
The UK defines ‘Biafra’ as an area “in the south-east of Nigeria that comprises the states of Abia, Imo, Ebonyi, Enugu and Anambra. The area is inhabited principally by Igbo (Ibo) people who are one of the country’s 3 largest ethnic groups”.
EVIDENCE FOR HUMAN RIGHTS APPLICATIONS
The UK, which is a signatory to several human rights and refugee conventions, believes Biafran secessionist agitations are covered by one or more of the following policies:
A person is reasonably likely to face a real risk of persecution or serious harm The general humanitarian situation is so severe as to breach Article 15(b) of European Council Directive 2004/83/EC (the Qualification Directive)/Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights as transposed in paragraph 339C and 339CA(iii) of the Immigration Rules The security situation presents a real risk to a civilian’s life or person such that it would breach Article 15(c) of the Qualification Directive as transposed in paragraph 339C and 339CA(iv) of the Immigration Rules A person is able to obtain protection from the state (or quasi state bodies) A person is reasonably able to relocate within a country or territory A claim is likely to justify granting asylum, humanitarian protection or other form of leave, and If a claim is refused, it is likely or unlikely to be certifiable as ‘clearly unfounded’ under section 94 of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002. However, decision makers are directly to still consider all claims on an individual basis, taking into account each case’s specific facts.
TheCable has contacted the Nigerian government for comment.
President Idris Deby of Chad has died from injuries sustained in a battle against extremists. The Chadian army is currently combating rebel forces who…
President Idris Deby of Chad has died from injuries sustained in a battle against extremists.
The Chadian army is currently combating rebel forces who have launched an assault on the capital, N’Djamena.
Deby, who was in power for 30 years, was reelected for a sixth term on April 11.
Deby was re-elected with 79.32 percent of the votes cast, according to provisional results from the electoral commission.
Former prime minister Albert Pahimi Padacke came in second with just 10.32 percent in the presidential vote, while turnout was 64.81 percent, Independent National Electoral Commission chairman Kodi Mahamat Bam said.
The first female president candidate in Chad’s history, Lydie Beassemda, came third with 3.16 percent.
The provisional results still need to be approved by the Supreme Court after it studies potential legal appeals.
After more than three decades in power, the victory of 68-year-old Deby was never in serious doubt after a campaign in which he faced a divided opposition lacking a major rival candidate and demonstrations were banned or dispersed.
Officially nine candidates were running against Deby, but three withdrew and called for the vote to be boycotted — though the Supreme Court kept their names on the ballots.
Deby campaigned on a promise of peace and security in a region that has been rocked by jihadist insurgencies.
Chad’s army said Monday it had killed more than 300 rebels following a heavily armed group’s incursion in the country’s north after election day. (AFP)
…Says opinion of South East is to get 2023 President
…Laments that 2014 CONFAB was another failed attempt at remodelling Nigeria’s federalism
…Notes it can’t deny IPOB members,
…Throws its weight behind EbubeAgu
By Henry Umoru
AHEAD of 2023 general and Presidential elections, the umbrella body of South East people, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, has asked Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, the All Progressives Congress, APC, and other political parties to zone the presidency to the South East for equity, justice and fairness.
Addressing journalists yesterday in Abuja, the President General of Ohaneze Ndigbo, Professor George Obiozor, who noted that time is ripe for Nigeria to get a President of South East extraction in 2023, said the talent of Igbo is yet to be fully utilized and maximised by Nigeria.
Obiozor, who expressed optimism that the South East would get the Presidency in 2023, however, warned that many were called, and a few were chosen. It wondered why why people were beaming unnecessary attention on negative issues such as security challenges in the South East because Igbo Presidency had changed from probability to possibility.
Responding to a question on how Ohanaeze Ndigbo would achieve its purpose for an Igbo President in Nigeria’s multiparty system, Obiozor said: ‘’We have many politcal parties. We would appeal to them to nominate an Ibo man or woman as their Presidential candidate.
‘’That would do. That would be wonderful. It is found in the Bible, ‘many are called, few are chosen. Politics is a matter of selection. We would sort out ourselves. Just support us, including the press. I am soliciting the press. For now, just support a president from the South East, an Igboman or an Igbo woman.”
The Ohanaeze President General, who stated that Igbo leaders had already started consultations on the realisation of Igbo presidency, said it had been wonderful.
“The results of the consultations are in the papers of day before yesterday, yesterday and even today. Very sound, positive results. Wonderful responses. Have you listened to Edwin Clark or read him? One at a time. None is on the run. ‘’So we are taking it easy. We have given you wonderful example of the support. First outing, tremendous success. You read it, you saw it. Edwin Clark is not a frivolous man. He is a man of history and he is leading a people who have had experience in this country. ‘’In the politics of precarious balance in Nigeria, they have had experience. They know what it takes to support any group and they have done it.”
On political parties he said: “As many as they are, each one of those parties should nominate an Igbo man from the South East. As for who (candidate) it will be, it’s found in the Bible, many are called few are chosen.
“During the last Presidential election, all the major candidates were from the same zone. It was also so in 1999. So why are we trying to break our heads because it is coming to our zone. Give us, our choice will be made by us with your cooperation. That is what the Ibos are demanding. We deserve it and it is reasonable.”
On how the South East would speak with one voice to avoid a plurality of interests and aspirants, Obiozor said: “Other tribes are more divided than us, Igbo are more united. But because all of a sudden there is possibility of Igbo Presidency, some people want to label Igbo a terrorist zone.
‘’I advise the press and ourselves to avoid certain things that are not necessary. Nobody can divide us. This time around, we can get the Presidency from Igbo land. Probability of Igbo Presidency in 2023 has become a possibility.
“Igbo want peace, but not peace of the grave yard. Whatever every other citizen of Nigeria is enjoying, the Igbo need it too.”
According to him, a President of Igbo extraction will bring “capacity, difference and Justice and equity. It is sad that Nigerian does not want to use talent of Igbos. The Igbos are known for their divergent opinions. Is a true consensus possible?’’
Obiozor, who dismissed the claim that South East people were not united politically, said the notion that the zone does not speak with one voice reflects the plurality of ideas by what he termed an egalitarian people which would be harnessed by Ohanaeze.
He said: “Speaking with one voice is dictatorial and undemocratic. We won’t speak with one voice, Igbos will express themselves in different voices which will be articulated by a central leadership that knows.
“For the Igbos having variety of opinion is not a crime, no section has only one opinion on an issue. Igbos have different opinions and they all converge on president of South East in 2023.
“Divergent opinion is healthy in politics and politics is not a science of exactitude. It is not mathematics. Politics is considerably and consistently a matter of choices. So for the Igbos having divergent opinions is not a crime.
‘’No section of Nigeria has one opinion or has one leader. Do we have one opinion in the North East, the North West, even South South. Igbos have different opinions and they converge in Igbo President, President from the South East in 2023. That is the opinion.”
Asked to speak on members of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, question, Obiozor said IPOB members are their sons that could never be denied.
“We won’t deny IPOB because they are our children, we can never never deny them. They are our people and they must listen to us just as we listen to them. Any area of conflict we will resolve as their father.’’
Answering questions on the 2014 National Conference, the Ohanaeze President hailed the conference as the best but faulted the refusal of the federal government to implement the recommendation of the conference, describing it as another lost opportunity.
“That confab was another failed attempt at remodelling our federalism. They didn’t want restructuring, they didn’t want federalism,’’ he said.
Responding to where the support of Ohanaeze laid between Eastern Security Network and Ebube Agu, Obiozor said: ‘’Believe me, an organization that is working for the security, peace, safety and interest of the Igbos is welcomed. Ebube Agu is formed by the government and governments of the South East.
‘’There is no comparison between Ebube Agu and any other organization. Any organization should come under the control of the government. This question is a very divisive one and we are a people tired of being divided by English language.
‘’Any organization that is fighting for fairness, equity and justice for Igbos is welcomed. If there is a difference, it will be method. It has to be harmonized. As the President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, I don’t want any method that puts Igbos in harms way.
‘’That is inimical to our own safety, you get my point. In fact, every group in Nigeria is divided, some even more divided than the Igbos. Look around.
“Until recently, the South East used to be the most peaceful zone. Now all of a sudden, because the idea of a president from Igboland has moved from a probability to a possibility, people want to turn Igboland into a terrorist environment.
‘’Igbos are not nation breakers, we are not violent people. So we must find out the root of the recent spread of violence and Kidnappings and all that. So that is what I am trying to say. People should not use such a thing as the character of Igbo people. For all the things you can know Igbos for, Igbos are not known for getting money through laziness, like kidnapping. You kidnap your uncle, you get money.
“So my advice to the press, do not give publicity to things that do not merit it by comparing Ebube Agu with any other organization that is working in Igboland. Things have hierarchy. The governors of the states are the chief security officers of the states.
‘’So how do you compare them with organizations. Organizations are welcomed if they are working in the interests of the people and the nation. The people we are taking about are our children. They are our people.’’ (Vanguard News)
■Warns against encroaching on lands in Igbo land as lands are owned by people and deities
■ Asks government to stop a war it cannot win against nationalism bit seek peaceful solution
The apex Igbo Socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo has warned those encroaching on lands in Igbo land that there’s no ‘No Man’s land in lgbo land’.
The President General of Ohanaeze, Prof. George Obiozor made this statement when he addressed the press at Ohanaeze Headquarters in Enugu on Thursday, 15th April.
Obiozor maintained that; “Land is a very sensitive issue in Igbo land because land has owners including some lgbo Deities. Those encroaching on land in Alaigbo are provoking Our people and our Deities.”
The Igbo leader also congratulated the governors of the South East for the setting up of the regional security outfit– Ebubeagu, the ban on open grazing and assured that they will rally Igbos across the globe.
“Ohanaeze Ndigbo wish to congratulate the Governors for this milestone and assure them of the support of Ndigbo anywhere and everywhere for their eftorts towards the security of Alaigbo. Also, we congratulate them for their emphasis on ban on open grazing across Igbo land.”
Ohanaeze also called on the federal government to exercise caution in the handling of the agitations across the country and warned that the use of force won’t yield the desired result.
We all are aware that we are passing through one of the worse times in virtually all aspects of our national life.
“The Federal Government must therefore learn a lesson from history by not fighting an unwinnable war against nationalism but seek possible peaceful options that are the only solution that guarantees national unity and peaceful co-existence.
“I therefore urge the Federal Government to reconsider the use of force in resolving the present national crises. Again history shows that military and violent means to solve the national question is bound to fail as it leads to further national fractionalization, anarchy and eventual or inevitable disintegration, as in all Empires or multi-national state or countries.
“Nigerian political leaders must make haste and make careful and delicate choices on how to solve Nigerian problem which is Nigeria National question. Above all measures, the Federal Government itself must Conspicuously embrace the values of justice, equity and fairness in their true sense for real peace, progress, unity and development to thrive in Nigeria.
“The greatest problem for leadership anywhere in the world begins when the general public or citizens including members of the national political elite become conscious of the existence of governance based on selective morality, outrageous paradox and double-standard. And at that point, citizen alienation set in and the results are loss of integrity, prestige, diminishing legitimacy and authority of the government. No government should get to the point where the citizens will feel uncomfortable or doubtful about its decisions on matters of the national interest and destiny.
“It is time the Government and people start the healing process. Nigeria is in agony and pains, it is time for national healing,” Obiozor said.
The full press statement is below:
RESTORING THE DIGNITY OF MAN AND HEALING THE NATION
BEING A PRESS CONFERENCE DELIVERED BY THE PRESIDENT GENERAL OF OHANAEZE NDIGBO WORLDWIDE, AMBASSADOR PROFESSOR GEORGE A OBIOZOR AT THE OHANAEZE HEADQUARTERS, NO 7 PARK AVENUE, GRA, ENUGU ON THURSDAY APRIL 15, 2021.
I welcome you all to the headquarters of Ohanaeze Ndigbo worldwide. Let me thank all the journalists here for the very robust relationship and solidarity you have demonstrated since we came on board in January 2021 as the elected officers of Ohanaeze Ndigbo.
It gives me great pleasure to once again address all of you on key national issues. I had assured you that from time to time we shall always assemble in this Ohanaeze Ndigbo Secretariat for an interactive session. It is my belief that a sustained partnership with the press will help to promote the lofty agenda of the current executive of Ohanaeze Ndigbo. You are welcome.
To begin with the greatest news I bring to you today is the heartwarming and overwhelming reception of Ndigbo of the news of the formation of Ebubeagu, a zonal security apparatus by the South-east Governors for the security of the south-east zone. Ohanaeze Ndigbo wish to congratulate the Governors for this milestone and assure them of the support of Ndigbo anywhere and everywhere for their efforts towards the security of Alaigbo. Also we congratulate them for their emphasis on ban on open grazing across Igbo land.
Once more, I state that there is no No Man’s land in Igbo land. Land is a very sensitive issue in Igbo land because land has owners including some Igbo Deities. Those encroaching on land in Alaigbo are provoking our people and our Deities.
We all are aware that we are passing through one of the worse times in virtually all aspects of our national life. General Murtala Ramat Muhammed over 4 decades ago succinctly captured the mood of our nation today in his message to the National Episcopal Conference of Roman Catholic Bishops held at Onitsha on September 9-14, 1975. “For too long we have paid lip service to the issue of remoulding our society, far too long, we have talked glibly in the past of the birth of a new nation while our nation continued to burn leaving big scars on our image as a people.
Now distinguished ladies and gentlemen, it is another critical time to rethink, reflect and to act before the prophecy of the late Chinua Achebe’s book “Nigeria: There was a country” becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy of a national reality and a national tragedy foretold. Sub- national consciousness or ethnocentric nationalism which is a dangerous form of nationalism to national unity and empires has taken over Nigeria, the dream of Nigeria unity is receding and fading fast with violence, crises and conflicts.
The result of all these is the rise of ethnic militias, agitation for secession, self-determination, insurgency, banditry, etc. These are historical protracted and unwinnable wars by nations and empires and there will be no exception. And among every other issue in contest in Nigeria today, this situation has produced the state of insecurity throughout the country. Today, Nigerians have no place to hide and also since there is nothing new in history, history has solution for these national problems. The Federal Government must therefore learn a lesson from history by not fighting an unwinnable war against nationalism but seek possible peaceful options that are the only solution that guarantees national unity and peaceful co-existence.
I therefore urge the Federal Government to reconsider the use of force in resolving the present national crises. Again history shows that military and violent means to solve the national question is bound to fail as it leads to further national fractionalization, anarchy and eventual or inevitable disintegration, as in all Empires or multi
national state or countries. Nigerian political leaders must make haste and make careful and delicate choices on how to solve Nigerian problem which is Nigeria National question. Above all measures, the Federal Government itself must Conspicuously embrace the values of justice, equity and fairness in their true sense for real peace, progress, unity and development to thrive in Nigeria. The greatest problem for leadership anywhere in the world begins when the general public or citizens including members of the national political elite become conscious of the existence of governance based on selective morality, outrageous paradox and double-standard. And at that point, citizen alienation set in and the results are loss of integrity, prestige, diminishing legitimacy and authority of the government. No government should get to the point where the citizens will feel uncomfortable or doubtful about its decisions on matters of national interest and destiny.
It is time the government and people start the healing process, Nigeria is in agony and pains, it is time for national healing.
The Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, on Sunday declared that the Eastern Security Network, ESN, will soon storm the Northern part of Nigeria.
IPOB’s spokesman, Emma Powerful stated this in response to claims that Miyetti Allah was planning to deploy 5, 000 security operatives to the Southeast to protect herders.
Powerful described the plan as an insult which would not be allowed to stand in the Southeast.
The IPOB spokesman warned that the group would take drastic actions if such step is taken.
A statement by Powerful reads partly: “The attention of the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra, IPOB, has been drawn to the threat by MIYETTI ALLAH to deploy 5000 jihadists to Biafra land to protect their cows and herders following the floating of Ebubeagu security outfit by South East governors.
“We consider this utterance as an insult to the entire Biafra and won’t tolerate it despite our grievances against the treacherous South East governors and the political elite.
“The South East Governors must understand that federal government of Nigeria sponsored Miyetti Allah to make this reckless utterance. The earlier they understand that IPOB is not their problem, the better. They should stop betraying us but appreciate our sacrifices in the defense of our ancestral land.
“The Miyetti Allah and their terrorists group should know that they shouldn’t play God for ever. They are trying to provoke ESN and IPOB to take a drastic action. IPOB and ESN are running out of patience with their insults. They should retrace their steps now! Let them come, we are waiting for them. Soon they will see ESN in the North.”
I was young when I made some of the comments, I was in university, some of the comments were made when I was a…
Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, Ali Isa Pantami, has renounced some contoversial comments he made on Al Qaeda and Taliban.
The minister has been under fire over the comments which were interpreted as endorsing the extremist sects.
Social media users and some government critics have asked President Muhammadu Buhari to fire him if he fails to step down.
But while answering questions during his daily Ramadan lecture at Annor Mosque in Abuja on Saturday, the minister said he now knows better about some of the comments he made in the past.
He said the campaign against him is politically motivated.
“For 15 years, I have moved round the country while educating people about the dangers of terrorism. I have traveled to Katsina, Gombe, Borno, Kano states and Difa in Niger Republic to preach against terrorism.
“I have engaged those with Boko Haram ideologies in different places. I have been writing pamphlets in Hausa, English and Arabic. I have managed to bring back several young persons who have derailed from the right path.
“Some of the comments I made some years ago that are generating controversies now were based on my understanding of religious issues at the time, and I have changed several positions taken in the past based on new evidence and maturity.
“I was young when I made some of the comments; I was in university, some of the comments were made when I was a teenager. I started preaching when I was 13, many scholars and individuals did not understand some of international events and therefore took some positions based on their understanding, some have come to change their positions later.”
■Warns FG: Don’t push Nigeria to disintegrate, Ohanaeze warns FG
Ohanaeze Ndigbo has declared support for both the Ebube Agu security outfit formed by South East governors and the Eastern Security Network (ESN) floated by the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) to tackle security threats in the South East.
President General of the apex Igbo body, Prof. George Obiozor, stated this at a press conference in Enugu, yesterday, Thursday, April 15, 2021.
“He also assured that there would be no clash between members of Eastern Security Network (ESN) floated by Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) and Ebube Agu as long as they worked for the protection of Igbo,” a report by Daily Sun said.
It quoted Prof. Obiozor as advising the Federal Government against the use of violent means to quell national questions by Nigerians as it could lead to more fragmentation and possible disintegration of the country.
Obiozor, according to the report, said the rise in ethnocentric nationalism has made the dream of national unity to be fading fast in the country.
He was further quoted as saying that Nigerians are passing through “one of the worst times in virtually all aspects of national life” citing the rise in ethnic militias, agitation for secession, self-determination, insurgency, banditry as having “produced the state of insecurity throughout the country.
“The Federal Government,” according to the Ohanaeze President General, “must therefore learn a lesson from history by not fighting an unwinnable war against nationalism, but seek possible peaceful options that are the only solution that guarantees national unity and peaceful co-existence. I urge the Federal Government to reconsider the use of force in resolving the present national crises. Again, history shows that military and violent means to solve the national question is bound to fail as it leads to further national fractionalisation, anarchy and eventual or inevitable disintegration.” (News Express)