FROM: DESMOND MGBOH/KANO
The traditional ruler of Igbo people resident in Kano State, Chief Boniface Ibekwe, has urged the people of Igbo extraction in Northern Nigeria to disregard the quit order issued by a coalition of Arewa youths a few days ago to igbo people resident in the region.
The traditional ruler, who is the Eze Ndigbo 111 of Kano State and Chairman of the Igbo traditional leaders in Diaspora, also urged Igbo people across Nigeria and beyond including their friends not to panic over the unguarded statement credited to the coalition.
In his reaction to the controversial Kaduna declaration, he responded that, “Let Igbo people go about their normal business and ignore the threat because I believe that the Northern leaders are not part of this threat’
“Besides, we have over two million Igbo in Kano State alone and you cannot just wake up one day and say that everybody has to go in three months time. That does not make sense.”
He said that ironically the pressure from the statement was more on the relatives and friends of Igbo people residing in the region adding that many Igbo people in the North did not even know of the threat and were going about their businesses without worry or concern.
Asked for his views on the activities of MASSOB and IPOB, he maintained that all these pro- Biafra crusaders were a creation of the marginalization of the South east and their immediate relatives in the South – South by both the present and previous governments.
He argued that they would invariably fade away as soon as the policies and programs of the present administration became fairer and more equitable to all Nigerians.
While emphasizing the need for dialogue, justice and fair play to all as a solution to the present challenges of the Nigeria state, he stated that the clamor for restructuring by a majority of Nigerians represented a viable option before Nigerians and their leaders in the present circumstance.
He appealed to the media to desist from creating more challenges for the Igbo in the North by over reporting the threat by the youth .
Meanwhile, investigation by Daily Sun in Kano and in the surrounding states indicated that the Igbo people were going about their businesses in different parts of the North while members of the host communities were largely busy with their fasting in line with the Holy month.
“Nobody is under any threat and nobody that I know is planning to relocate to anywhere” said John Okeke in Sabon- garri , Kano.