The Agitation for the realization of Biafra got a massive boost as the The Ndigbo United Assembly, NUA, and other groups yesterday added its voice to the clamor for the realization of the Sovereign State of Biafra.
In a press statement, yesterday in Onitsha, Anambra State, the groups stated that the Federal Government must be told in a clear terms that those being compromised and influenced to recant are not in control of the movement and millions of its supporters and sympathizers.
The statement was jointly signed on their behalf by Comrade Aloysius Attah, for CLO; Comrade Peter Onyegiri for Centre for Human Rights & Peace Advocacy; Comrade Samuel Njoku for Human Rights Club (a project of LRRDC); Comrade Justus Uche Ijeoma for Forum for Justice, Equity & Defence of Human Rights.
Others are Comrade Chike Umeh for Society Advocacy Watch Project; Obianuju Joy Igboeli, Esq. for Anambra Human Rights Forum; Comrade Emeka Umeagbalasi for Intersociety; Comrade Alex Olisa for South-East Good Governance Forum and Eze Eluchie for: PADDI Foundation.
They said the the first step was to withdraw all trumped up charges leveled against IPOB leader, Nnamdi Kanu and release him unconditionally with immediate effect.
Continuing, the groups said “This is why in a bid to justify crumbs federally received, they end up on the pages of newspapers with their faceless and mushroom groups.
“A Nigeria of pluralism and democratic constitutionalism, equality and fairness with no distinction in theory and practice as to ethnicity, place of birth, education, sex, class, oligarchic or aristocratic background and religion is always a preferred option and can be safely described as a united Nigeria.
“But a Nigeria of the opposite remains the worst option, while assertion of right to independent statehood is its best alternative. This is because it is better to live free in a land flowing with poverty than to live buoyantly in a land shackled and manacled by chains of slavery and enslavement.
“To assuage the earth-shaking agitations and placate the people of the Southeast zone, all the age-long structural imbalances must be redressed especially the country’s geopolitical imbalances including lopsidedness in the number of States, LGAs, Senatorial Districts, Federal Constituencies, Federal Roads, Fiscal Allocations and geopolitical compositions of the field formations and headships of the Army, Police, Air Force, Navy, DSS, NIA, FRSC, Prisons and Customs.
“In the area of federal public office holders in Nigeria drawn from the six geopolitical zones, the Southeast zone is abysmally represented. For instance, no senior police officer from the zone is among the current heads of the country’s 12 Police Zonal Commands and the few serving AIGs from the zone have since gone on statutory retirement leaving the zone no known serving AIGs out of the country’s current Police AIGs of at least 22.
“All these are owing to age-long deliberate policy designed to stunt their promotions and posting till in the twilight of their statutory retirements when they are given retirement promotions. The composition of CPs and AIGs’ cadres of the Nigeria Police Force is also grossly lopsided in fragrant breach of Section 14 (3) of the 1999 Constitution.
“The same gross lopsided composition is the case in the Nigerian Custom, Nigerian Immigration Service, the Nigerian Prisons Service, the DSS, the NIA, Army, Navy and the Air Force.
“In the headships of SPUs, ATSs, SARS, Federal Highway Police, the Mobile Police and Border Police composition and headship in the Nigeria Police Force; same is the case; likewise the country’s federal Appeal and Federal High Court and Appeal and Supreme Court Judges and Justices in which the zone is acutely represented.
“The same gross lopsidedness and exclusion are the order of the day in federal ministers, directors, headships of federal executive bodies as well as Service Chiefs and other top non ministerial federal appointments”.
In similar vein, President-General of NUA, Comrade Peter Okala while speaking to newsmen during a protest march organized by Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, said: “The Biafran agitation is positive in the sense that our colonial masters knew our differences before making a contract of amalgamation to try if we could understand ourselves”.
“But the fact remains that till date, the centre could not hold and the South East is still hated with passion by our Northern and South West brothers.
“Could you imagine Wole Soyinka using Igbo people to popularize his seminar topic in far away United States of America, where he was quoted as saying that Igbo people can only vote at the direction of their stomach? What kind of a hopeless statement from a so-called prominent citizen is that? ”
“In Nigeria today, if one is asked to name 100 most corrupt people in Nigeria who have emptied our treasury, hardly will an Igbo man be among them”.
“We are abused in every part of Nigeria as people, who could do anything to get money simply because the West is in control of the media and the North has partnered with them to marginalize the South-East.”
Okala also observed that the inability of political office holders in the South -East to join the pro-Biafra movement was not a crime because it may be a treason in Nigerian laws, but “it’s the right of every person to choose an association or a country he or she should belong to and there is no law that will empower anyone or institution to stop.”
Omolara Adegoke- Abuja
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