Posted by News Express | 23 October 2021 | 1,867 times
•Claims IPOB receiving support from foreign nations
•Allegations incoherent, untenable – IPOB
The Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, has come under attack over his comment, yesterday, that the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), was responsible for the killing of prominent Nigerians, including Dr. Chike Akunyili and Alhaji Ahmed Gulak.
Malami put the total number of Nigerians allegedly killed by IPOB at 184.
The AGF, who said the revelation is contained in a report by a committee constituted by the Federal Government, claimed that embattled leader of IPOB, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, took advantage of the 2020 EndSARS protest to destroy property and kill individuals, particularly security personnel.
According to him: “The EndSARS protests of October 2020 played into the sinister plans of Nnamdi Kanu, whereby he seized the protests through subversive and inciting online broadcasts and actively commanded and directed attacks on security personnel and facilities.
“As a result of these broadcasts, members of IPOB attacked and killed security personnel and burnt down Police stations, correctional centres, INEC offices, bus terminals, the palace of Oba of Lagos, banks, hospitals, shopping malls and vehicles, amongst others.”
He also claimed that the Federal Government had found that the major financier of the Yoruba nation agitator, Sunday Adeyemo (Igboho) is a member of the National Assembly.
He was silent on the identity of the federal lawmaker, adding that Igboho allegedly received funding from a firm – Abbai Bako and Sons – allegedly being probed for terrorism financing activities.
The AGF’s remarks have attracted criticism and condemnation from IPOB, front line Igbo groups and leaders.
IPOB in a statement by its Media and Publicity Secretary, Comrade Emma Powerful, described Malami’s allegations as incoherent and untenable.
“We note with great dismay the kind of incoherent and untenable allegations coming from a supposed Attorney General and Minister of Justice of Nigeria. What a disgrace! Why not wait for us at the law court instead of resorting to media trial. That shows he has no case to prove against IPOB,” he said.
He added: “This latest show of shame by Malami also shows the level of his ignorance and cluelessness on the office he occupies. To put the records straight, IPOB remains a peaceful movement, and was never involved in such barbarities Malami was linking IPOB with.
“Instead of killing security agents, IPOB members have been the victims of the extra-judicial killings by the wicked Nigeria security operatives as no fewer than 20,000 of our members have been murdered in cold blood by the Nigeria security agencies.
“It is not controvertible that innocent IPOB members and Biafran youths have been wasted at different times by the Nigeria security agencies. This genocide against IPOB is still ongoing, yet they want to suddenly change the narrative.
“We have always said it that the Unknown gunmen were a creation of the Nigeria security agencies to implicate and demonise IPOB. We have no hand in the killings in parts of Biafra land.
“The federal government, which is sponsoring the killings, is desperately looking for excuses to implicate IPOB and nail our leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu. Our leader is innocent of all the concocted allegations and lies vomited by Malami against him.”
He continued: “It is clear to all and sundry that IPOB was not involved in the ENDSARS protests. Nigerian youths who were fed up with the evil in Nigeria vented their anger during the #EndSARS protests which took place simultaneously in different parts of the country.
“IPOB could not have been the ones behind the protest, which was a spontaneous reaction of dissatisfied youths against the maladministration in the country.
“Since the formation of ESN operatives by our great leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, the outfit never launched any attack against the Nigeria security operatives, rather the Nigeria security agents are the ones haunting for ESN operatives.
“ESN is only after murderous herdsmen, bandits and jihadists wreaking havoc across Biafra land, which the hypocritical security agents could not stop.
“Nigeria has an incompetent Attorney General because this Attorney General does not know that extraordinary rendition is an international crime and anybody or country that flouts this law has committed international crime.
“It is very pitiable that this man who claims to be Attorney General and Minister of Justice in Nigeria cannot differentiate between crime and agitation. ESN and IPOB have come to stay and nothing will stop us.
“The world knows that IPOB is not a terrorist organisation and Malami cannot succeed in making them change their mind.
“Malami should stop wasting his time and just fix a date for Biafra referendum where our people can decide which country they want to stay. Failure to do so is to their peril.
“All destruction in our territory was politically motivated and carried out by security agents recruited and nicknamed unknown gunmen. We know the so-called unknown gunmen are DSS personnel, army and police personnel set up to implicate IPOB and ESN.
“IPOB, ESN have no hands in the killings in Biafra land. Those behind the barbarity are still pointing accusing fingers at IPOB and ESN all at the same time. What a hypocrisy!”
Apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, expressed worries over the haste with which the federal government concluded the murder of Dr. Chike Akunyili, husband of Dora Akunyili and former presidential adviser, Ahmed Gulak.
The group admonished the Federal Government that reeling out all the crimes that have been going on across the country and blaming them on the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) would not be a solution to the current situation in the country.
Speaking with The Nation, the spokesman, Alex Ogbonnia, called on the Federal Government to adopt Diane in resolving the matter.
“Our understanding of Malami’s address is that he has heaped all the criminalities across the country over the period on IPOB.
“It appears right now that investigations are already concluded on who killed Dr. Chike Akunyili, the husband of Dora Akunyili, and Gulak, and also who destroyed the palace of the Oba of Lagos. His remarks also showed that he already knows the killers.
“As the Attorney General of the Federation, whatever remark Malami makes should be highly founded on facts. It is not supposed to be involved in speculations.
“If on the other hand he has not finished investigation, what he is saying is a mere hyperbole.
“If investigations are now completed, he owes it a duty to let the people of Nigeria know who killed Gulak and Dr Akunyili and we will now see the linkage between those people and IPOB.
“Otherwise, one little falsehood or error will destroy and render this whole thing invalid.
“We want to state again that reeling out all the crimes that have been going on across the country is not a solution.
“Ohanaeze Ndigbo right from time believes that the federal government should adopt dialogue on this matter.
“Irrespective of whether you call them, terrorists or not, we’re saying that adopting military or jackboot approach is an unwinnable war.
“We believe using dialogue or alternative dispute resolution will go a long way to achieve peace.”
More knocks for Malami
A faction of the Ohanaeze led by Chidi Ibeh said Malami’s comment was setting up the stage for justification for the deployment of the acquired Tucano fighter jets in the suspected troubled areas, especially the southern part of country.
In a statement by the Secretary General, Mazi Okechukwu Isiguzoro, the group said: “Federal Government might have concluded the strategies to use the Super Tucano Fighter Jets in the Southeast. It appears that there are backstage activities to invade the Southeast in the name of fighting terrorism, but they should reconsider the lives of innocent civilians who are at risk of these plans.
“We are displeased with the posture of the Federal Government towards the delay in declaring bandits and herdsmen terrorists.
“We understand the reasons for Governor El Rufai’s insistence that FG should declare bandits terrorists, so as to warrant the use of the Super Tucano Fighter Jets to curb the insurgency in the North.
“We are aware of the conditions attached to the acquisition of the Tucano Jets, which the USA assumes it’s aimed at targeting terrorist garrisons.
“So Mr. Malami had nailed and re-echoed that IPOB is a terrorist organisation and justified that any actions of FG to curb the insecurity in the Southeast, which includes deployment of the fighter jets, is acceptable and justifiable.
“We are calling on President Buhari not to deploy any Tucano Jets in the Southeast. We believe that bandits that shot down military aircraft and shot at Abuja/ Kaduna train should be declared terrorists before any deployment in the Southeast.
“Nnamdi Kanu should be given a fair trial in Abuja court. The idea of deployment of Super Tucano jets ahead of Anambra election will reopen the sordid and tragic experiences of Biafra war.
“The presidential marching orders to security agents to make sure that Anambra elections hold should be devoid of any deployment of Tucano jets in the Southeast “.
A former governor of Anambra State, Dr Chukwuemeka Ezeife, said Malami is lying and “he knows that he is lying. Our people know who killed Gulak. Akunyili’s husband was killed at random. The plan of government is to make all the killings in the Southeast to be IPOB when they are not killing anybody.
“In Owerri recently, the Police fought with some gunmen and killed one of them only to discover that the person they killed was a DSS officer and not IPOB. Remember Owerri prison affair where those who wanted to blame IPOB changed their mind and said 70 per cent of the people were not from the Southeast. “
On how he felt not being allowed to enter the courtroom during Kanu’s trial, Ezeife said: “I don’t have any problem with not being allowed to enter the courtroom. I wouldn’t go and fight.
“I left the court after about two hours. The main problem was that I took the traditional ruler of Ndigbo and the secretary of Igbo elders along. The place had very little space and they said I would be allowed in if I could enter alone. I didn’t want to take them there and abandon them.”
A professor of Political Science and chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Enugu State, Prof. Obasi Igwe, said Malami’s comment was not believable.
Speaking with The Nation in Enugu, Obasi lamented that the Southeast was systematically being destroyed with the Federal Government labelling IPOB as the culprits with little or no investigation.
He said: “Lives and businesses in the East are being systematically destroyed, and with little or no investigation, every one of these crimes is labeled IPOB/ESN even when almost no one is believing the narrative.
“There is nothing that a committee to justify the ongoing mayhem should not come up with, at least the unjustified war and massacres in the east have to be justified. We thought that any committee report was for a court hearing, so how now a public presentation?
“What might an Nnamdi Kanu or IPOB achieve by killing Akunyili? And does the 177 include the alleged thousands of Igbo youths, men, women and children already killed in batches or missing?
“Do those who seem to be drinking blood in Nigeria not even appear bothered about the believability of the kindergarten stories they are weaving?”
Igwe, who recalled how a policeman massacred people in Enugu a few months ago with the intention of tagging it unknown gunmen, called on the Federal Government to “immediately bring to a halt the state of unprovoked siege, blood and fear imposed on peaceful Igbo communities; to re-empower Igbo communities and disarm the Miyetti Allah and other Fulani AK-47 terrorists, so we can unmask the unknown gunmen killing Nigerians.”
He continued: “The military-security services are already killing the Igbo on the pretext of fighting either unknown gunmen, IPOB/ESN. Fighter jets are only an additional weapon.
“Police stations and prisons are being attacked, with almost always their Igbo personnel being isolated and killed, with almost nothing done.
“A Gulak was murdered with the vehicle burnt and evidence removed. A bomber at Afikpo was apprehended and till now nothing has been heard of him. More than 400 people were arrested in Imo and we’re told they’re almost entirely non-Igbo, and we’ve not heard of any prosecutions.
“The whereabouts of any of the youths arrested on their way to the East are yet to be disclosed. Social media are filled with stories of armed outfits arriving the East for committing all manner of atrocities.
“While various communities have been deprived of self-defense, the Miyetti Allah and other AK-47 terrorists are still left untouched.”
(The Nation: Excluding headline)
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