The Middle Belt Union, a group that aims at uniting all the people of the Middle Belt region of Nigeria to fight for a common interest in the Nigerian project, has condemned the dateline given to the Igbos to leave the north before 1st October, 2017. In a letter sent to NEWISSUES the group stated that no group has the right to intimidate anyone and call on the federal government to arrest the leaders of the groups who are trying to incite violence.
THIS IS THE LETTER BELOW
The Middle Belt Union distances itself from the call by some groups who called themselves Northern Youths who held a meeting yesterday in Kaduna and afterwards gave the Igbos from now to 1st October, 2017, to leave the north over the sit-at-home protest in the North East to mark the 50th anniversary of Biafra that is now the topic of the moment. We do not only distance ourselves from such groups but condemn such inciting meeting in totality.
The Igbos are one of the most peaceful people in Nigeria. That is why everywhere you travel to all over the nation, from the urban to the remotest parts of the nation you see an Igbo business man or business woman living peacefully with the people. We should encourage that if we want to build a nation that prided itself of promoting unity in diversity.
We also agree that any group in Igbos land and elsewhere are free to protest as long as the protest is peaceful as enshrined in Nigerian constitution. This is what democracy is all about. Not all Igbos support Biafra, not all Nigerians support Biafra, those who don’t support Biafra also have the rights to protest peacefully.
No group has the right to threaten another group or incite their people against another group.
The Middle Belt Union believes in the idea of one Nigeria. We believe that as one Nigeria we can be greater despite all the challenges which is not peculiar to Nigeria alone but all nations all over the world. We believe in talking and continuous talking, jaw, jaw, not war, war.
We call on the law enforcement agents to hunt down these groups who want to instigate miscreants against the Igbos and charge them to court. We call on Governor Nasir El-Rufai who has been against such groups to do the right thing because if these groups are left it would be like encouraging mayhem starting for Nasir El-Rufai’s Kaduna State.
We are calling on all the groups in Nigeria, agitating for a separate Nigeria, from the Sharia agitators to Odua People’s Congress, the Niger Delta, IPOB and all other groups that we can really build a great Nigeria despite all the challenges, but no group has the right to give ultimatum to Nigerians to leave their part of the country or try to incite violence against certain people. On that premise we call on the Nigerian state to arrest the leadership of these groups and charge them to court.
George Onmonya Daniel
Publicist, The Middle Belt Union.