Magnus Eze, Enugu and Fred Itua, Abuja
Former Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu, yesterday, tackled the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, describing him as an ingrate.
Ekweremadu who arrived Abuja to a rousing welcome by his supporters, also revealed that he was unruffled by the attack on him by members of IPOB in Nuremberg, Germany at the weekend.
Ekweremadu advised Nigerians, including Igbo leaders, to feel free to travel to any part of the world they wished to, maintaining that the attitude of his assailants did not represent the dispositions and behaviour of Nigerians in the diaspora.
“I think they were just people who were misdirected and misguided. I had the feeling they were under the influence of alcohol. They don’t represent the feelings of our people. There is nothing to worry about.
The organisers, the Igbo in Germany, have written a letter apologising for what happened. Everybody is free to go anywhere because those ones don’t represent the behaviour of Nigerians abroad.
“For me, I have moved on. The government and authorities of Germany are free to do whatever they wish about it.”
He maintained that he had no regrets speaking for justice for Ndigbo and helping to facilitate Kanu’s release, insisting that he believed in justice for all irrespective of tribe, religion or region.
“I have always spoken out on matters that concern Nigerians no matter where they come from. I believe in justice for all. It had nothing to do with IPOB,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Nigerian embassy in Germany has said the attackers will be prosecuted under German laws.
Under German laws, physical assaults are punishable by fines or imprisonments of up to 10 years, depending on the gravity.
In a press statement, yesterday, the embassy of Nigeria in Berlin said the threat level of the event had been classified as “minimal” by the German police, hence the lack of security personnel at the event.
Members of the Ndigbo Germany (N.I.G), the umbrella union of the Igbo resident in the Federal Republic of Germany, have tendered unreserved apology to the former deputy Senate president.
They also appealed to the National Assembly to forgive them for the embarrassment caused a ranking senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Coordinator, Ndi-Igbo Germany, Oge Ozofor, in a statement, regretted that some hoodlums attempted to disrupt a well-thought out programme, designed to encourage foreign investment and industrialisation of Igboland, by providing a platform for Ndigbo in Diaspora to network and engage the German business community.
“No words can describe our shock, consternation, and sadness at this inexcusable, shameful and senseless attack. We apologise from the depths of our hearts that you had to experience such a horrible thing here in our midst. This is not how we are here. Please do not hold this incident against the 99 per cent law abiding Umu-Igbo in Germany. Our apologies go to Ohaneze Ndigbo and to all well-meaning Igbo-Diasporan groups and associations both at home and abroad for this disgrace.”