The Ndigbo Unity Forum (NUF), has asked the Army high command to immediately withdraw soldiers from Okporo Orlu community in Imo State as well as stop indiscriminate killings and destruction of property in the area.
NUF also called international community such as International Criminal Court (ICC), United Nations, United States of America (USA), European Union (EU), African Union (AU), Canada and others to prevail on the Federal Government of Nigeria to stop using the Nigerian Army to shed the blood of Ndigbo in Nigeria in their policy of protecting the Fulani in their expansionist agenda in Southern and Middle Belt of the country.
The group in a statement signed by their president, Dede Uzor A.Uzor in FCT Abuja, however, condemned the killings of security operatives by some hoodlums in Okporo, Umutanze in Orlu LGA, saying that such act was not only barbaric but an outright disobedience to the constituted authority and the constitution of the land.
The identity of the culprits, said NUF, should be discreetly unraveled and severely punished in accordance with our laws.
But they deplored the practice by the military to resort to jungle justice by arresting, killing, maiming, detaining and destruction of the property of innocent citizens who were not connected with the incident especially in Amaifeke, Okporo, Umutanze, Ihioma and Umuna all in Orlu LGA Imo state.
In most cases, these victims, were very far away from the scene of the incidents, asking the Nigerian Army to stop forthwith this jungle justice and deploy the machinery available to them to find out the perpetrators.
NUF however, flayed the South East Governors for conceding to the Military High Command to use over 400 army of occupation to kill, arrest, detain their defenceless people in a bid to secure their political position.
The Governors, said NUF, easily give in to this because of the prevailing leadership failure or lack of good governance and strong political will in the South East by the Governors as against their counterpart in South West.
“So, there is always disconnect between them and the people. They don’t have control of the people.
They easily resort to using violence, instead of relating with the people. It is not so in South West and the North because of the quality of their leaders and they relate with their people”
The same thing, said the group, applied to our Senators and House of Representatives members with the exception of just a few of them, saying that they are only interested in gulping money but not bothered about the people.
NUF said it is unfortunate that since the Okporo Orlu incident started,the South East Governors, the members of the National Assembly from the Zone and political leaders from the area have not deemed it fit to condemn the action of the military for fear of losing their position.
They said: It is pathetic that even the new Ohaneze Ndigbo led by Prof. George Obiozor, has not said anything since the incident started, a clear indication of the type of leadership he would offer Ndigbo.
But this seemly indifference of Ndigbo, NUF said, is remarkably opposite of the position of the Yoruba leaders in almost the same situation in Ondo and Oyo States.
“The South West Governors, other Yoruba leaders and the ordinary people showed solidarity and concern for their people during any challenges.
We therefore call on the Ndigbo to rise up and demand accountable leadership from all the categories of their leaders as the power of the people is the only way that will make these selfish leaders responsive to the yeanigs of the people” they said.
Ndigbo Forum said it is unfortunate that Igbo youths including a 16 year old boy was killed in Okporo, while another was killed at Nkwo-ito junction among other heinous acts perpetrated against the people without the Governors and other leaders of the zone uttering a word to condemn it.
They said uptill now, Hope Uzodimma, the Governor of Imo State has not visited the area nor condemned the atrocious act.
NUF called on the Federal Government to set up a Judicial panel of inquiry to investigate the matter and punish those involved.
They also asked both the Federal and State Government to immediately provide jobs for young people to discourage them from militancy and social vices.
30th January 2021.