Igbo leaders seek demilitarisation of South-East zone
The Ala-Igbo Development Foundation (ADF) yesterday lamented what they described as ‘massive militarization and occupation of Igboland by armed security agencies” and called on Acting President Yemi Osinbajo to order the demilitarization of the zone without further delay.
They also condemned the lopsided federal appointments, which they said have been skewed against the Igbo, stressing that for equity, justice and fairness, the appointments should be reversed.
Rising from their two-day meeting in Enugu, the leaders urged that the next population census should capture the internationally accepted standard data for enumeration and development planning, which includes the state of origin, religion, housing, ethnicity and educational status of citizens.
In a communiqué released after the meeting signed by its President, Prof. Uzodinma Nwala and Secretary, Prof. Nathaniel Aniekwu, the group noted that inaccurate census figures was the basis upon which Ndigbo have been marginalised in the country.
Perturbed by unending agitations in the country, the group called on the Federal Government to engage the various nationalities and stakeholders to renegotiate the basis of the continued membership in Nigeria.
It urged the South-East and South-South zones to follow the Ekiti and Benue examples by promulgating anti-grazing laws as a means of checking the dastardly activities of herdsmen in the areas.
Meanwhile, immediate Past President of Aka-Ikenga, Goddy Uwazuruike yesterday condemned the rejection of the bill to redevelop the southeast by the House of Reps as ‘purely a petty action that bothers on myopia”
He argued that the South-East and South-South zones were devastated by the civil war and had since not been rehabilitated, stressing that the reconstruction, rehabilitation and reconciliation declared by former President General Yakubu Gowon (rtd.) was a mere word without action.
He said: “The bill would have been the first conscious effort to get the scars of war eliminated. All the roads in the area are still marked with potholes, indeed bombs and shells. If we are thinking of the area to renovate, the South-South and South-East will be the first. Reality is that the area is still pock marked up till today.”