Following series of skirmishes and targeted violence and attacks masterminded by alleged armed supporters of the Finland-based Simon Ekpa targeting Igbo people going about their legitimate businesses, president Muhammadu Buhari has been asked to let Nnamdi Kanu personally address the media affirming and caregorically confirming the suspension of the sit-at-home order.
Civil rights advocacy group, Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) made the call in a statement on Monday.
HURIWA has also criticised the law enforcement agents and the Directorate of State Services for failure of intelligence to effectively nip in the bud the dozens of bloody attacks and hit-and-run shootings by hoodlums and terrorists in the South East purportedly attempting to destroy the economic mainstay of millions of Igbo people.
“Since the DSS, the Police and the armed forces together with the governors of the South East of Nigeria are happy that the commoners are been decimated, degraded and almost at the verge of being wiped off the earth by the scorched earth terrorist attacks of undesirable elements seeking to unleash a regime of chaos, anarchy and doom in the South East, the President should let Mazi Nnamdi Kanu speak to Igbo people to affirm or deny the report by his lawyers that he had ordered an end to the Sit-at-home order which one Mr. Simon Ekpa an alleged follower of the detained leader disputed and ordered for forceful implementation of the so called Sit-at-home order.
“The live television broadcast by Mazi Nnamdi Kanu on the lingering controversy around the order will assuage the suspended animation and suspicions by some persons loyal to Simon Ekpa that Nnamdi Kanu did not order an end to the economically stagnating Sit-at-home order in the South East of Nigeria. Secondly, just as was done in Ukraine, President Muhammadu Buhari should democratise arm licences so sane adult Nigerians cam bear AK-47 and AK-49 to safeguard their right to life as a matter of national emergency. If these killings continue, who then will President Muhammadu Buhari preside over government for?” HURIWA said in the statement issued by its National Coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko.
The rights group also lamented the bloody violence and mass killings of Igbo citizens by suspected gunmen purportedly enforcing the Simon Ekpa ordered Sit-at-home order.
“Our Igbo ancestors won’t be happy with us that armed terrorists of Igbo extraction are killing fellow igbos over political differences and agitation for srkf government. If President Muhammadu Buhari is not the sponsor of the chaos in the South-East then let his government adopt a pragmatic approach such as permitting that Mazi Nnamdi Kanu addresses the media as a matter of extreme urgency to put to an end these killings”.
“The fastest way to bring to the end of the stalemate between loyalists of Simon Ekpa who claimed to be a self confessed disciple of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu the detained leader of IPOB and the spokesperson of IPOB who confirmed the suspension of the Sit-at –home order by Mazi Nnamdi Kanu disputed by Simon Ekpa, is for the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari to let Mazi Nnamdi Kanu to publicly in a widely publicized live broadcast from the DSS office to personally confirm that he personally ordered the suspension of the Sit- at-home order. This should be done immediately to put an end to unending bloodshed in Igbo land, ” the group said.
HURIWA further condemned the reported attack by gunmen on Monday morning launched on the Independent National Electoral Commission office in Owerri, the Imo State capital.
” Part of the building was damaged after it was torched by a firebomb.
” This is happening eight days after an INEC office was attacked in the Orlu Local Government Area of the state.
“The Owerri attack, which was carried out around 3am this morning, was, however, repelled as three of the perpetrators, including their commander, were gunned down.
” Also, AK47 rifles and some pump action guns and eight vehicles were recovered from the hoodlums.
” An impeccable source said, “This morning, gunmen launched a vociferous attack on the INEC office in Owerri, Imo State but the joint security team was able to repel them and killed three of the attackers, including their commander.
“Seven vehicles were recovered, including seven AK47 and pump action rifles. Many of the gunmen escaped with bullet wounds. But one police vehicle was burned by the hoodlums, ” the statement said, adding that Abattam said only three AK47 rifles and vehicles were recovered.
He stated, “We killed three of the attackers and recovered three AK47 rifles and pump action guns. We also recovered two explosives and three of their vehicles.”
It was gathered that security had been beefed up in parts of Owerri, following the incident.