By Mukwuzi Joseph
Pan Igbo socio-cultural group, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, has appealed to the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, to reconsider its seven-day sit-at-home directive which coincided with the Anambra governorship election.
IPOB had recently resolved to observe a seven-day sit-at-home in the South-East from November 5 to November 10 unless the Federal Government released its leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu from from custody on or before November 4, 2021.
In a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Chief Chiedozie Alex Ogbonnia, Ohanaeze said;
“The Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide pleads with the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) to reconsider the 7 days’ sit-at-home order in the South-East of Nigeria from November 5 to November 11.
“This is to enable the Governorship election for Anambra State scheduled for November 6 to hold.
“It is important to note that Anambra State is the economic live wire of the South East with an impressive steady growth trajectory.
“For instance, Anambra State showcases the best rural road network and rural community development in the South East if not in entire Nigeria.
“Anambra is home to the greatest number of small, medium, and large scale industries in the South East.Most recently, Anambra has added a cargo airport to its resource base.
“Above all, Onitsha is the largest market in West Africa. The above illustration implies that Anambra State is the melting pot of Igbo traders and artisans.
“It stands to reason that Anambra is the big Iroko tree that provides a shade for most Igbos. Apart from the shade, it also hosts the numerous birds that perch on the branches.
“Therefore any harm to the Iroko tree will create untold disastrous chain reactions and catastrophe for the Igbo.
“While pleading with the IPOB to rescind the Lockdown plan, Ohanaeze Ndigbo requests the Chairman, Southeast Governors Forum, and the Governor of Ebonyi State, Engr. Dave Umahi to convene an emergency meeting of Igbo stakeholders and the Youth Leaders to address the legitimacy crisis in the South East, especially as it relates to the Anambra State election and the political solution for the release of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.
“It is important to point out that one of the causes of the crisis of confidence in the South-East is because of the yawning gap between the Youths and indeed the masses, on one side and the political leaders on the other.
“Therefore, the leadership of the various youth groups should not be excluded in any meeting aimed at resolving the current crises in Igbo Land. In other words, the Youths want to be fully convinced of our commitment to their plight.
“Ohanaeze Ndigbo reiterates its solidarity with any group that protests the Igbo alienation in the project Nigeria with caution for restraint, maturity, and wisdom.
“It is based on the foregoing that Ohanaeze adopts the philosophy of dialogue, negotiations in coalition with other concerned groups that comprise the Southern and Middle Belt Leadership Forum led by Chief E K Clark.
“It is also lamentable that the burial ceremony for the Afara Ukwu born Chief Mrs. Victoria Aguiyi Ironsi, slated for November 5 in Umuahia, Abia State may be drastically affected by the prevailing Igbo social climate. General JTU Aguiyi Ironsi represents so many things to the Igbo and we owe his soul a duty.
“Ohanaeze Ndigbo urges the Governor of Anambra State, Chief Willy Obiano to convene a joint meeting of the Anambra State chapter of Ohanaeze Ndigbo led by Chief Emeka Udodeme and the Association of Town Union (ASATU) led by Barr. Titus Akpudo to activate meetings in all the 181 towns of Anambra State.”