The founder of the Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB), Chief Ralph Uwazuruike, has condemned the operations of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) under Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.
Uwazuruike stated that IPOB’s activities are exposing Ndigbo to danger and undue animosity.
This is as Uwazuruike declared that the Igbo nation has no plan of going to war again and will not allow anybody to manipulate Ndigbo into a needless war against Nigeria or any component part of Nigeria.
He described as unkind for someone to be beating the drums of war in Nigeria while hiding away in a safe haven overseas. Uwazuruike, who spoke during a press conference in Owerri, the Imo State capital, yesterday, decried the group’s sudden drift from non-violent struggle to an armed struggle.
He said: “I am worried about the sudden drift from a non-violent struggle to an armed struggle, because I started the Biafran struggle in Nigeria and I recruited every other member. Violence was never part of the struggle and was never meant to be. These people beat the drum of war they can neither fight nor win.”
He regretted that the activities of Nnamdi Kanu and his group are having a negative effect on the youth of Igboland. He said: “It (IPOB’s action) is affecting every facet of our lives; we are losing our strategic economic and socio-political cohesion as a people.
Our young people are being fed with falsehood and manipulated into thinking that the path of violence could solve all our problems. This has become so bad that it is affecting our cultural orientation, which usually promotes respect and honour for elders and leaders.
“It is even worse that people who are not even resident in the country dictate for people here urging violence and mayhem. There is no more respect in our land; no respect for Ohanaeze, no respect for elders, no respect for governors. Our leaders are freely insulted and denigrated.” Uwazuruike commended Governors Nyesom Wike of Rivers State and Hope Uzodinma of Imo for holding their ground and resisting the violence and recklessness of a few misled people. He added: “I started this struggle over 20 years ago, but I have never left Nigeria. I have been threatened, dehumanized and denigrated. I know the consequences of calling out youths to attack the military or the Police force. “The man beating this drum of war is a nobody. I recruited him and I know his capacity. As you know, he did not mobilize them to do all these while he was in Nigeria, now he has fled he can afford to incite the youth because he will not be around to bear the consequences. “What I am saying about Nnamdi Kanu, I will say against another person who does the same thing. If Kanu changes his way,
I will embrace him. My concern is that his actions are bringing death to our young men. In Obigbo, in Orlu and any other place, whenever his action draws out the security forces, Nnamdi Kanu must take responsibility of all Igbo lives lost in the ensuing clash.”
On how to demobilize the Eastern Security Network (ESN), Uwazuruike agreed that every community needs security and advised the South-East Governors to take over ESN, equip them, train them and make them a responsible vigilante outfit that reports its activities to relevant authorities without taking laws into their hands.