The Chief Ralph Uwazurike-led Biafra Independence Movement (MASSOB-BIM) yesterday asked Igbo residents in the South East to ignore the sit-at-home order by the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).
A member of the MASSOB-BIM Elders Council, Chief Benjamin Ekwenugo, made the call on behalf of Uwazurike, during the commemoration of the 19th anniversary of the Movement for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB), organised by the Enugu West zone of the group.IPOB had asked the people of the South East to stay indoors today, to mark the alleged invasion of the home of its leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.
In a statement by its spokesman, Emma Powerful, the group promised that all activities in the region would be paralysed today. It said: “We call on all Biafrans to pass a vote of no confidence in these corrupt South East governors, Ohaneze Ndigbo and PANDEF by sitting at home as ordered by the IPOB high command.
“Operation Python Dance III has started with deadly shootings in Anambra, illegal arrests and abductions in Enugu and Aba. To stay safe and alive, people must remain indoors because the Fulani caliphate, the Nigerian Army and police will kill anybody they see outside this Friday (today).”
But describing the directive as misplaced, Ekwenugo said: “IPOB is on its own. What will it achieve with all these sit-at-home orders? We are coming out tomorrow (today). It is only today (yesterday) that we have an activity in commemoration of the Biafra struggle. There is nothing like people not coming out tomorrow (today).”He called on Igbo people to ignore the group and go about their businesses.
Also, one Comrade Pius Ezeudo, an executive of the tricycle union in Enugu, said the members would go about their businesses today. Another union executive, Obi Onyenwa, at Enugu’s New Market re-echoed similar view, saying the traders in the market and others in the town would not stop transactions.Both men gave the indication while responding to a plea by Enugu State Commissioner of Police, Mohammed Danmallam, urging residents to ignore IPOB’s dictates.
Security operatives held a show of force on Wednesday, aimed at striking fear into the hearts of IPOB members and assuring residents of their safety.A human rights activist and lawyer, Ebun-olu Adegboruwa, meanwhile, has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to call security agencies to order, in line with his promise to the international community to respect the rights and freedoms of all citizens.He made this call following the military’s decision to launch Operation Python Dance III in response to the stay-at-home order.The lawyer however stressed the need for IPOB to honour judicial processes.