The apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, has urged members of the proscribed secessionist group, Indigenous People of Biafra, to sheathe their swords and allow peace to reign in the South-East.
This is as Kanu in a Friday statement by his lawyer, Ifeanyi Ejiofor, urged his followers to be ‘circumspect’ because ‘the enemies were relentlessly exploiting vulnerable means to blackmail IPOB.’
Ohanaeze’s spokesperson, Chief Alex Ogbonnia, in an interview with our correspondent, also stated that some elders in the South-East led by the leader of Ohanaeze, Prof George Obiozor, were engaging with the president, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) to seek Kanu’s release.
He also begged IPOB members not to ruin the chances of the South-East in the pursuit of what he described as legitimate rights.
Some members of IPOB protested in Aba, Abia State, over the non-release Kanu by the Federal Government recently.
The protesters vowed not to allow the 2023 election to be held in the South-East if Kanu was not released and Biafra granted.
They urged Nigeria to forget the 2023 election in the region “if our leader, Nnamdi Kanu, is still in DSS custody.”
Ogbonnia, in an interview with Sunday PUNCH on Saturday advised the secessionists not to build for themselves a ‘Frankenstein’ that may o consume them.
According to him, the political climate is in the favour of the South-East with the coming of the Labour Party presidential candidate, Peter Obi, and it would be disastrous for any of them to ruin the system that the elders had struggled to build.
“Our position on this matter has been constant on the matter. Nothing is ever solved with violence. In the first place, the president of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Ambassador George Obiozor, has already teamed up with other Igbo elders to engage the president and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces, (Major General) Muhammadu Buhari (retd), to seek Nnamdi Kanu’s release.
“That engagement is in process and we are confident of that. We want to believe that the President will understand the viewpoints of the Igbo elders and do the needful. I want to also believe that this effort will be successful.
“We have often advised our young boys that they have every reason to agitate. They have sufficient reason to do so. However, they should listen to us as elders, especially when the political climate is favourable to the South-East. We cannot at this time create a Frankenstein – a monster that will destroy us. We don’t want to play into the enemy’s territory. We advise our youths to take it easy. We are doing a lot of work to see how we can overcome some of these challenges.’’