As more Nigerians continue to berate the northern groups who issued a statement calling on Ndigbo to leave the north before October 1, the Ohanaeze Ndigbo has on its part called on Igbos in the north to prepare to defend themselves in the event of any attack on them.
The call was made by the Ohanaeze Ndigbo Youth Council (OYC) on Wednesday, while addressing newsmen after a meeting in Enugu.
The OYC National President, Mazi Okechukwu Isiguzoro, regretted that the ultimatum was a call to arms, which could lead to another civil war in the country.
The call is coming as the police is yet to officially announce that it has arrested the signatories to the statement bearing the ultimatum, as ordered by the Kaduna State Government.
The police had stated that it had embarked on a manhunt for the signatories, even as the northern coalition has insisted that they stand by the statement, even in the wake of widespread condemnation.
The group in another statement on Thursday in Kaduna signed by it’s spokesman, Abdulazeez Suleiman, lashes at governors Nasir El Rufai and Kashim Shettima of Kaduna and Borno states respectively, over their stand against them, saying that the governors were driven by their ambitions to be vice president.
The statement read in part, “We restate our determination and commitment to ensuring that the North will never partake in any contrived arrangement that would still have the Biafran Igbo as a component.
“We reiterate our call on Nigerian authorities and recognized international bodies such as the ECOWAS, AU and UN to hasten the initiation of the process for the final actualization of the Biafran nation and with it the excision of the Igbo out of the present federation”.
But Mazi Isiguzoro said “Igbo resident in the North should get ready to defend themselves in the event of any provocation and attack from the Arewa youths”.
He further lamented that “They are at it again and this is a sad reminder of the civil war. This is how it started as a joke and before we knew it, a coordinated and simultaneous attack was launched against the Igbo in the North.
“This is a sad development considering the efforts being made to unite this country. This is a sad commentary considering the sacrifices Igbos have made in this country.
“We, however, wish to state unequivocally that the Igbo are not cowards. We are not afraid of Alhaji Abdul-Azeez Suleiman, Yerima Shettima and their cohorts.
“Ndigbo want to make it categorically clear that we are ready for them. We cannot be intimidated by their ranting.”
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