Igbo sociopolitical organisation, Igboekulie has expressed deep concern over the current state of insecurity across the Igbo-speaking areas of Nigeria, particularly the South-East, describing it as a “steady slide to anarchy”.
The group which stated this yesterday in a statement signed by its President and Secretary-General, Prince Ben Onuora and Barr. Benjamin Obidiegwu respectively, added that the events of the past few months do not correctly depict who Igbos are.
“Ndigbo, lest we forget, are known for peace, hard work, healthy competition, irrepressible can-do spirit, love for education, collective decision taking by umunna, famed apprenticeship scheme, onye aghala nwanne ya, biri ka mbiri, aku ruo ulo, etc.”
Regrettably, it seems these time-tested virtues are gradually being jettisoning, going by current unpleasant developments. “In replacement, we are now experiencing arson, kidnapping, invasion by murderous herdsmen, online abuses, corruption, poor political, traditional and spiritual leadership, gruesome extra judicial killings by and of security personnel and now, “unknown gunmen”!
They noted that while some of these vices have been orchestrated or inflicted on the Igbo nation by non-Igbos, “we must admit we brought many of them unto ourselves. The result is that Igboland is today very unsafe for human as well as material preservation and therefore, an unlikely destination for investment- foreign or local. As at last year, the South-East, according to the National Bureau of Statistics, attracted the least foreign direct investment of all the six zones in Nigeria in 2020! Unemployment is highest in our land, especially in Imo State. With the current violence, what is already bad, can only get worse,” they said.
The statement further noted that the politics of nepotism and exclusion at the federal level is at an all-time high, saying however that as they continue to demand for equity for their people, “let us not allow ourselves and our land to be destroyed,” adding that only the foolish invites war unto his home because When the war is over, it is him who will be homeless. “It has taken us fifty one years to rise from the ashes of the civil war. We should not, wittingly or unwittingly, embark on that journey again,” Prince Onuora and Barr. Obidiegwu warns.
To this end, the group called on the Ohanaeze Ndigbo, IPOB, the state governors, legislators. traditional rulers, elders, the clergy, various socio-political groups and the youths that it is time to sheath swords, have an all-embracing conference/dialogue on the present and future of Ndigbo, make peace, enthrone good governance and embrace progress in all ramifications.
“Meanwhile, at our various spheres of influence, let us, as leaders, appeal to our aggrieved youths to immediately ignore attempts to provoke them into an avoidable war.
“We at Igboekulie are willing and ready to provide support for any initiative that will bring peace and progress to Igboland. This task is urgent and crucial,” they said.