From JEFF AMECHI AGBODO, ONITSHA
Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign state of Biafra (MASSOB) and Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) have declared that the alleged intimidation, and harassment of prominent Igbo men and their businesses has justified the clamour for the restoration of Biafra state.
The groups in their separate reactions over the commando style invasion of Innoson Vehicles Manufacturing Company and arrest of its chairman, Chief Innocent Chukwuma by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) condemned the move, calling it an insult to Igbo leaders.
The leader of MASSOB, Mr. Uchenna Madu in his reaction said that the invasion, physical assault and abduction of Chukwuma was consciously hatched, sponsored and allegedly backed the Federal Government of Nigeria because of its “unrepentant jealousy against Ndigbo, stressing that the more the oppressors of Ndigbo vent their frustration and envy, the more Ndigbo is developing more technological feat.
“MASSOB declares that the attack on Innoson is an attack against Ndigbo, we shall never tolerate or keep silent on this wickedness against Igbo enterprises. We shall never allow this insult against our creativity go unpunished. The Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB) and their collaborators against Ndigbo are blind to see the dangers and bad effects their action against Chief Chukwuma will bring to them.
“MASSOB views this systematic and intimidating actions of security agents as a strategic grand plan to stifle the economic prowess of Biafrans. We say no to economic and industrial monopoly in Nigeria. This is another open evidence of vindication of our self-determination struggle for the actualization and restoration of Biafra
“MASSOB also wishes to remind the people of Biafra that since after the Nigeria- Biafra war ended, the Nigerian state has been devising both secretive and open means in frustrating the individual economy of the people of Biafra which resulted in Chief Eric Umeofia (Erisco foods) relocating from Nigeria. He was frustrated out of Nigeria. Chief Cletus Ibeto (Ibeto group) was also frustrated out of business, Dr Ifeanyi Ubah ( Capital Oil and Gas). He too was always harassed using DSS and EFCC. Now, Prof Nick Eze of Aulic Nigeria Ltd because they are Igbo.
“We observed that this same systematic system of frustrating the economic development of Igbo land is what the Federal Government uses in killing PRODA, Enugu, ANAMCO Enugu, Emene steel mill, Enugu, NIGERCEM, Nkalagu, Standard Poly Plastic Industry (STANPOL), Umuahia, General Cotton Mill (GCM) Onitsha etc. Now they are scheming to kill Innoson Vehicles Manufacturing Company because he is an Igbo man”.
Also the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) condemned in strong terms the arrest and harassment of businessmen of Igbo extraction by the Nigerian Government and her security agencies.
The group said that with the economic emasculation of the Biafran territories through decades of punitive policies, the few successful businesses that made it against all odds like Chief Chukwuma is now being harassed and humiliated publicly by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
The Media and Publicity Secretary of IPOB, Emma Powerful in his reaction warned those involved in the orchestrated campaign to frustrate Innoson Motors to desist from their act before it is too late.
It gave reasons for the harassment to include: “The impotency of political leadership in the East, coupled with intellectual myopia of the governing class. This remains the leading contributing factor to the unrelenting humiliation of leading figures from both the South East/South South by Arewa North and her para military institutions.
“ Had Innoson sited his factory in Lagos or Kaduna, every possible line of credit would have been extended to him but due to the fact his company is located in Enugu, he must be chased down and destroyed. This hopefully is to serve as a deterrent to others who might be entertaining the idea of relocating their businesses to Biafraland.
“Politics of appeasement and sabotage of collective interest by Ohaneze Ndigbo, PANDEF and similar interest groups. Age long South East/South South political philosophy of cowardly acquiescence to the dictates of the North, regardless of the consequences on the psyche and well being of the masses, is a major motivator for government agencies, headed by Northerners, to destroy indigenous Biafran businessmen at will. Nigeria is guided by the knowledge that politicians from the two geo-political zones that make up Biafra are terrified of the mythical might of their Northern masters and will be prepared to condone every manner of evil against their own people.”