Ohanaeze Ndigbo on Thursday in Enugu appealed for the release of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, leader of Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB), from detention.
Gary Enwo Igariwe, Ohanaeze’s President-General, made the appeal in his speech at the 2016 Igbo Day celebration held in Ohanaeze Secretariat in Enugu.
Igariwe who was represented by Ogochukwu Onyema, the Deputy President General, recalled that Ohaaneze Ndigbo rose from its last National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting to reiterate its position on the incarceration of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu and further appealed that he should be released unconditionally.
Igariwey said Ohanaeze feels that a critical look at the reasons why the young man was agitating without arms and elements of violence would help to put things right in our country.
“We urge the Federal Government to re-evaluate the circumstances which made the court of law to earlier grant him bail, and see to which extent it can be useful in putting things straight.
“Mazi Nnamdi Kanu’s incarceration till now, does not seem to be palatable, and does not seem to pass a positive message,” Igariwey said.
On the attitude of Federal Government towards Niger Delta Avengers and destruction of oil pipelines, Igariwey said Ohaaneze Ndigbo maintains that “Amnesty Option and Negotiation” might pay off better than military action against the Niger Delta Avengers.
He urged the Federal Government to set up a serious machinery/think-tank to study and isolate the major remote causes of these attacks, which have unarguably contributed to the recession in the country.
He said that Ohanaeze appreciated the supremacy of the Federal Government and the might of the military, but the question remained that violence and war can never bring about progress.
Igariwey said Ohanaeze was concerned about the unholy dilapidation of Federal Government roads in South-East Nigeria, which have remained in a state of disrepair and impassable.
On the proposed sale of national assets, he urged Federal Government to reconsider the proposal, as selling such assets built by previous administration might not be the way to succeed in an enterprise.
“We rather think it might be better if we look inwards to get to the root causes of the recession and address same, rather than disposing of our hard earned national assets,” Igariwey said.
In a goodwill message, the new Enugu State Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, Mrs. Rita Mba, who represented Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, commended efforts of organisers of the event at promoting culture and tradition of Ndigbo.
Mrs. Mba said Ugwuanyi reminded Igbo sons and daughters in the Diaspora that time had come for them to return and invest at home, especially now.
“The Governor likes Ndigbo. You can see what he is doing in Enugu-Onitsha expressway. He is doing it for entire Ndigbo, not Enugu alone,” Mrs. Mba said.
She added that as the new Commissioner of Culture and Tourism, she would do her best to support the promotion of Igbo Culture and Tradition.
Other dignitaries at the event included Dr. Joe Nwaorgu, the Secretary General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo; Mazi Okechukwu Isiguzoro, President of Ohanaeze Youth Council (OYC), and Chief Chris Eluomunor, Chairman, Anambra State chapter.