Okwe Obi, Abuja
Northern elders under the umbrella of Coalition of Northern Elders for Peace and Development (CNEEPD), have expressed concern over allege maltreatment meted out on the people of the South East in the scheme of things.
While promising to support the region in future elections, the elders persuaded them to be law-abiding and support the government of President Mohammadu Buhari, to achieve its mandate.
In a statement, yesterday, CNEEPD National Coordinator, Engr. Zana Goni, and National Women Leader, Hajiya Mario Bichi, hailed President Buhari, for adopting civil approach in tackling the #EndSARS protest which led to looting and burning of private and public buildings across the country.
Goni said: “As elders, we must clearly state that the country has not been fair to Igbo people in all ramifications and we must admit this fact as true Muslims.
“We therefore call on our Igbo brothers to support the government of President Muhamamadu Buhari to enable him succeed.
“President Buhari is doing a lot in terms of projects in the South East. The facts are there to see except for people who want to deliberately distort facts.
“The Igbo people must believe and work for the unity of Nigeria to enable other parts of Nigerians to speak up for them.
“In solidarity, we shall continue to speak for peace, justice and equity for every region of the country, because Nigeria belongs to all of us.”
He continued: “We wish to sincerely thank President Muhammadu Buhari, the President and Commander-In-Chief of the Armed Forces, for his wisdom in handling the youths uprising that resulted in killings, looting, stealing, and burning down of both private and public properties in some states of the federation.
“These actions by some misguided youths and criminal elements who were out to deliberately instigate religious and ethnic tensions in Nigeria were unfortunate.
“But, we thank the president for the civil approaches he used in dousing the tension.
“We thank the Northern youth for exercising restraint despite the high level of provocative comments and videos on social media during the violent protest which were intended to provoke the North into reaction.”
“They were smart enough not to allow themselves to be used by crisis entrepreneurs who are out to destabilize our country. They have proven that they have outgrown the antics of the agents of destabilization.”
In additional, he applauded the Igbo socio-cultural group, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, for rebuking utterances allegedly made by the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, adding “this is an indication that he does not represent the Igbo race in anyway and cannot speak for them.”