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Lawyers probe Enugu killings

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A group, League of Igbo Youth Lawyers (LIYoL), has said it is investigating the reported killing of some members of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), following a clash with soldiers, police and Department of State Services officers in Emene, Enugu recently.

In a statement, the DSS said it lost two officers during the clash. Speaking at a town hall meeting in Awka, Anambra State, yesterday, the Convener of the group, Stanley Okafor, said they were not happy with the development.

According to him, they have been making inquiries and studying the claims by IPOB and the security agencies since the incident occurred.

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Okafor said: “Biafra is like history that you cannot delete. It is the history of a people and Biafra is not a threat but a promise of a stronger Nigeria, if only we can draw from the past experiences and learn the lesson drawn from them.

“We need greater resourcefulness in handling civil agitations with a view to containing rather than exacerbating them.”He said the group was interested in the unity of the country, warning against its disintegration.

“We will not abandon Nigeria for those who do not mean well for the country. We must all remain in Nigeria and salvage it,” Okafor said.

“We are monitoring developments and we must keep our actions within the ambit of the law.”

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The young lawyer, who criticised the security agencies for attacking the separatists, called for a panel of inquiry to look into the clash.

The group decried the alleged marginalisation of Igbo, calling for a change.

Okafor said: “If IPOB members say they want to exercise their rights to self-determination as provided in the constitution, African Charter on Human Rights and other international Conventions on Human Rights, they are free, provided they limit their clamour within the confines of the law.

“IPOB is proscribed at the moment and there is a suit challenging its proscription. As lawyers, are following due process and if the Honourable Justices of the appellate court see there is no basis for the proscription and see the need to de-proscribe IPOB, they would act accordingly.”

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IPOBLIYoLStanley Okafor
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