YOUTH wing of the Igbo Socio-Cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, has condemned the recent attack on the members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPoB) at Emene, Enugu State, by security agents, describing it as a “provocative scenario attempted to instigate civil unrest and disobedience in Igboland.”
While appealing to Igbo youths as well as groups hurt by the clash between IPoB and Nigerian security agents not to retaliate, the group urged South East governors and other notable Igbo leaders to intervene in the crisis.
A statement signed by the national publicity secretary of the group, Chief Osmond Nkeoma and deputy national president, Kingsley Dozie in Owerri said, “on our intelligence investigation, some of the people killed were all Igbos in both sides of DSS and IPOB. We must stop now. We condemn vehemently the spilling of innocent Igbo bloods in Igboland under any guise, but definitely will not tolerate any form of intimidation from any quarters. We urge Igbo governors and every well-meaning Igbo to intervene immediately as there might be reprisal attacks from both sides if there’s no quick intervention.
Meanwhile, Senate Minority Leader, Enyinnaya Abaribe, has lamented that the frequent killings in Igboland have given room for widespread suspicion of a sinister motive. He also warned that the labeling of every Igbo group as terrorists and incessant killing of its youths by security operatives, has become one too many and was no longer acceptable.
Abaribe, in a statement in Abuja by his media adviser, Uchenna Awom, joined other groups to demand for the setting up of a judicial panel of inquiry by the Enugu Governor, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi to unravel the truth in the assertions of both the security and other groups on what really happened.
Abaribe, who said it was disheartening that security operatives appeared to derive pleasure at any slight whim to unleash mayhem using the most lethal weapons against unarmed Igbo youths at every turn, noted that such unsavory, brutal and hateful resort to extreme repression demean Nigeria’s democratic ethos and even question her unity.
He, however, advised the youths to remain calm and not to resort to any form of reprisals, or succumb to provocations that could tempt them to take laws into their own hands, while “we await the official reaction of the Enugu State Governor on the matter.”
Meanwhile another Igbo Socio-Cultural “Nzukọ Umunna” group has bemoaned what it described as the constant killing of unarmed Igbo youths by security operatives.
The group noted that the killings took place when security operatives invaded a peaceful meeting of the youths.
According to a statement by the group’s coordinator, Ngozi Odumuko, and Paschal Mbanefo, secretary, it received the report with shock and deep concern. “We note with grave concern the constant killing of unarmed Igbo youths by security operatives. This is unacceptable and must stop. However, we urge Igbo youths to refrain from retaliatory attacks and urged Enugu State Governor to set up a judicial panel of inquiry to unravel the immediate and remote causes of these wanton killings including the exact number of victims, with a view to bring the perpetrators to justice
More so, Association of South East Town Unions (ASETU), while reacting to the killings, called on Nigerian Government to quickly set up a judicial panel of enquiry to unearth the immediate and remote causes of the incident. In a statement signed by its national president, Chief Emeka Diwe and the national secretary, Gideon Adikwuru, the group said: “We condemn the killing of unarmed civilians on Sunday in Enugu; security forces must observe rules of engagement.
“We are deeply worried over the gory images and videos of the bodies of unarmed civilians, alleged to be members of pro-Biafra groups, reportedly shot dead by security agencies and littering the streets of Emene in Enugu State
“Whatever their offences might have been, we insist that a republic, to which Nigeria lays claims, must be run on the basis of law and constitutionalism and the law enforcement agencies must at all times respect the rights of the citizens and observe rules of engagement.