The Top Echelon of the military, the Defence Headquarters (DHQ) yesterday labels indigenous People of Biafra( IPOB) terrorist organisation whilst Ohanaeze and governors from the southeast proscribes every of its activities in its entire region.
In statement made available to journalists by the Director of Defence Information( DDI), Maj. Gen John Enenche in Abuja Yesterday listed reason why the why the group was declared a terrorist organization to include the formation of a Biafra Secret Service; formation of Biafra National Guard; unauthorized blocking of public access roads; extortion of money from innocent civilians at illegal road blocks.
Others include: Militant possession and use of weapons (stones, molotov cocktails, machetes and broken bottles among others) on a military patrol on the September 10; physical confrontation of troops by Nnamdi Kanu and other IPOB actors at a checkpoint on September 11, 2017 and also attempts to snatch their rifles and attack by IPOB members at a military checkpoint on September 12, 2017, at Isiala Ngwa, where one IPOB actor attempted to snatch a female soldier’s rifle.
Enenche said after due professional analysis and recent developments, it has become expedient to notify the general public that the claim by IPOB actors that the organisation is non-violent is not true.
The statement reads: “From the foregoing, the Armed Forces of Nigeria wishes to confirm to the general public that IPOB from all intent, plan and purpose as analyzed, is a militant terrorist organisation.
“Therefore, parents and particularly unsuspecting residents of the South East and other Nigerians should advice their wards to desist from joining the group.Leader of the group, Nnamdi Kanu and his supporters have been campaigning for an independent country of Biafra made up of ethnic Igbos. But Kanu said this week that the group was non-violent, adding that their stance would be reviewed and accused the military of attacking unharmed members of his organisation.
Meanwhile Governors of the Southeast and leaders of Ohanaeze Ndigbo yesterday night announced the proscription of activities of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) asking its members and all aggrieved groups in the zone to articulate their positions on all national issues and submit it to them.
They also appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to withdraw military presence in the zone, assuring that they have taken concrete steps to protect lives and property of non- indigenes and indigenes in the zone.
Rising from their emergency meeting in Enugu attended by the leadership of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, General Officer Commanding the 82 Division, Nigerian Army, Enugu and National Assembly members, the governors resolved to ensure no activity of IPOB exists any longer in their various states.
Although the IPOB leadership was invited to the meeting, but did not come, Chairman of the governors’ forum and Ebonyi State governor, Dave Umahi said that they sent their apologies.
Other resolutions of the meeting, according to Umahi, further read: “Southeast Governors Forum, Ohanaeze Ndigbo and National Assembly members do hereby reinforce their commitment to a united and indivisible Nigeria.
“We also reinforce our desire for the restructuring of Nigeria where all National issues will be discussed and amicably settled to achieve justice and fairness to every Nigerian
“We reiterate our earlier position that the November 18, 2017 governorship election in Anambra State must hold.
“Accordingly, we appeal to the President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to please withdraw the military in the Southeast zone, while police perform their traditional role of maintaining law and order.
“We are in touch with the Northern Governors Forum and they have assured us of the safety of all our people living in the north and we have also planned for an exchange of visits between the governors and to reinforce the confidence of Nigerians in this respect.
“In keeping with our earlier position, we wish to assure Nigerians that full investigation is ongoing on all allegations of killings, maiming and other unlawful conduct in the Southeast zone within this period. The governors and the security agencies are in agreement that appropriate action will be taken against anyone found culpable.
“We advise all residents of the Southeast to go about their normal businesses as the government of each state is committed to protecting everybody. We advise our people in the Southeast to please be law-abiding”.