Biafra Heroes Day: Embrace Non-violence, Ohanaeze Tells Agitators

Date:

From CHARLES ONYEKWERE, ABAKILIKI

Apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo has urged the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, to embrace non-violent means of advocacy, so as to create a conducive environment for the eventual release of its leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.

The Igbo group emphasised that “dialogue and peaceful resolutions are as the most effective approach to restoring tranquility in the South-East.”

This was contained in a statement signed yesterday by its factional Secretary-General, Okechukwu Isiguzoro.

The statement reads in part: “It is imperative for South-East politicians, elder statement, distinguished elders of international repute and eminent Igbo opinion leaders to engage President Bola Tinubu for a political solution towards Kanu’s release.

“Ohanaeze Ndigbo remains committed to fostering unity, reconciliation and progress for Ndigbo. We extend our hand in friendship and seek the forgiveness and understanding of all Ndigbo and Biafran agitators as we embark on this journey towards lasting peace. Let peace and prosperity reign once more in our cherished South-East.

“On this solemn occasion of Biafra National Heroes Day, Ohanaeze extends a sincere and open apology to Ndigbo and Biafran agitators. We convey our heartfelt plea for peace and unity, hoping to mend the wounds of the past and pave the way for a harmonious future.

“Over the past decade, Ndigbo have endured an unprecedented wave of violence, civil disobedience and loss of public trust in our governors.

“The resulting wave of non-state actors and Biafran agitators holding sway has inflicted significant harm on the region, leading to a collapsing economy, disruption of academic activities and the painful closure of government institutions due to endless sit-at-home exercises. 

“This unfortunate reality calls for urgent reflection and a collective effort to restore peace and prosperity to our beloved region.

“On this historic day, as we commemorate Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu’s rallying call at Ahiaria Declaration, urging Igbos to protect themselves against external threats, we remember the valour and spirit of our forbearers. 

“Today, we find ourselves at a critical juncture where the cosmetic approaches of South-East governors have fallen short in combating the escalating insecurity in the region.

“Ohanaeze, in a tone of condemnation, points to the unpreparedness, lack of historical perspective and genuine patriotism exhibited by governors in addressing the security challenges plaguing our people.

“We acknowledge our role in the leadership failure within the zone and accept the responsibility for deviating from the foundational principles and objectives set forth in 1976 by our visionary leaders.

“It is with deep humility and genuine remorse that Ohanaeze tenders an earnest and unreserved apology to Ndigbo, particularly to Biafran agitators, seeking forgiveness for our past errors and our inability to secure the release of Kanu.

“This demonstration of sincerity marks a pivot towards collaborative efforts to eliminate insecurity and restore peace in our region.

“We call on Biafran agitators, including IPOB, MASSOB, BRIGE and others to embrace non-violent means of advocacy, as it will create a conducive environment for the eventual release of Kanu. Dialogue and peaceful resolutions stand as the most effective approach to restoring tranquility in the South-East.”

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