The Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), has distanced itself from the alleged killing of eight Northerners in the Orogwe communuty of Mbaitoli local government area of Imo State.
The victims were reportedly killed by unknown gunmen on Friday which made Northern groups and the police link the killings to IPOB and its militia arm, the Eastern Security Network (ESN).
But in a statement denying any link to the murder of the traders, the group said it has nothing against ordinary Northerners and Fulani people living peacefully and doing their legitimate businesses in the region.
In the statement made available to Ripples Nigeria by IPOB’s Media and Publicity Secretary, Emma Powerful, the proscribed secessionist agitators described the police linking the killing to it as false and blackmail.
“IPOB has not and will never attack any peaceful individual or group of people doing legitimate business or trading in our territory.
“We are only after those criminals created by Nigeria security agencies and bandits they brought into our territory masquerading as herdsmen who kidnap for ransom, rape our women and murder our farmers in our forests and bushes.
“IPOB will never succumb to pressure and blackmail from pursuing those terrorists masquerading as herdsmen in our bushes and forests.
“ESN has been dealing and dislodging those sponsored terrorists and will continue to do so until they vacate our forest and bushes; we do not have any business attacking known residents we have been living with over the years.
“The Nigeria Police and its sister security agencies operating in Biafraland should therefore leave IPOB alone to sanitize our territory of terrorists, they should stop linking us with their senseless, barbaric and sponsored killings.
“IPoB has severally said that we have nothing against Hausa and Fulani people living peacefully and doing their legitimate businesses, anybody linking IPOB to the alleged recent attack in Imo State is doing that to demonize and blackmail IPOB, they are not saying the truth.
“IPOB did not, will not harm or kill anyone in Imo State because we are peaceful. We are focused on rescuing Biafrans from damnable Nigeria Republic.
“We wonder why the Nigeria government is using their stooge in Imo State to cause confusion and collaborating with the Ebubeagu militia to murder innocent citizens, while using the police and DSS agents to shield them,” the statement said.
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