The South East Council of Traditional Rulers has decried the incessant gruesome killings and destruction of property in the zone.
It called for an end to what it called “general atmosphere of fear and progressive militarisation in the geo-political zone“.
The council made the condemnation in a statement jointly signed by the chairmen of traditional rulers in the South East and made available to newsmen on Tuesday in Owerri.
The statement was co-signed by Eze Joseph Nwabeke, (Abia); Obi Nnaemeka Achebe, (Anambra); Igwe L.O. Agubuzu, (Enugu) and Eze E.C. Okeke (Imo).
“We believe that the dire situation in the country today calls for statesmanship, open and sincere dialogue in the search for compromises, not growing militarisation which may ultimately threaten the very existence of the country,” it noted.
The council called on all disaffected individuals and groups in the zone to sheath their swords and rally together for mutual forgiveness and healing to end the internal strife.
“Cutting our nose to spite our face does not help our present situation; it is senseless to destroy our homeland, or be an accessory to its destruction, in order to prove our marginalisation,” it stated.
The council called on President Muhammadu Buhari to de-proscribe the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) as a terrorist organisation, as well as release Nnamdi Kanu from detention.
The traditional rulers said that the appeal became necessary to restore genuine peace and normalcy in the South East based on justice, equity, fairness, love, mutual understanding and respect.
They urged the IPOB and its affiliate units to immediately stop all provocative rhetorics and actions that promoted violence, fear and unlawful acts.
“As part of creating the enabling environment for reconciliation and peacebuilding, the ongoing sit-at-home on Mondays or any other day in the South East should end forthwith,” the council pleaded.