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‘Nigeria’s South-East a no-go area for now,’ ACF warns Northerners

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The Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) on Monday, expressly warned Northerners against travelling to the South-East for now in view of the current security situation in the country.

It also decried the attacks and killings of northerners residing in or visiting the Southpart of the country, particularly the South-East.

The ACF made the call in a statement issued by its National Chairman, Chief Audu Ogbe, in Kaduna.

The forum was reacting to the Sunday’s murder of the All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftain, Ahmed Gulak, by unknown gunmen in Owerri, Imo State.

The ACF advised the people of the region to engage the services of security agents before embarking on any trip to the Southern part of the country.

The forum warned that continuous attacks on northerners in the South would not augur well for Nigeria, saying such situations were responsible for the country’s civil war of 1967 to 1970.

The statement read: “It was so bad at a point in February this year that the northern traders who normally supply the food needs of the South, the Amalgamated Union Food and Cattle Distributors of Nigeria (AUFCDN), embarked on strike action to make the point that their lives also mattered.

“The ACF was among those who put pressure, on, and ultimately convinced, the AUFCDN to call off the strike. The ACF did that in the spirit of ONE NIGERIA.

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“Yesterday, Sunday, May 30, 2021, one of the leaders in the north was brutally murdered on the streets of Owerri, Imo State by gunmen, most likely of IPOB and Eastern Security Network (ESN), who have been waging a public campaign of killings and other forms of brutalities, to realise their dream country of Biafra.

“The Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) hereby issues a very strong advisory to all northerners who may wish to travel to the South-East to weigh the importance and necessity of such travels unless such trips are absolutely necessary and of compelling nature, like matters of life and death, otherwise they should NOT be made.

“And where the trip must be undertaken, the traveller should take every security precaution in his or her movements while there, including linking with the security agencies at the place/places to be visited.

“The Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) also wishes to call, with the strongest voice, on the security agencies to do everything possible to apprehend those who assassinated Alh. (Barr) Ahmed Gulak and bring them to justice.

“The lives of northerners, and indeed of ALL Nigerians matter, and the ACF cannot keep mute when our people, and indeed all Nigerian, are murdered in cold blood by misguided and atrocious people.

“Unfortunately in the midst of this serious national crisis, it would appear that the entire narrative from the South-East has been taken over by IPOB and so-called unknown gunmen to the exclusion of established leaders. This is worrisome.”

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