Arewa Youth Consultative Forum (AYCF) rejects the recent call by the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), on the Middle Belt region to join its sit-at-home campaign, calling on governors to seal shops being closed in solidarity with IPOB.
As explained by the group’s national president, Alhaji Yerima Shettima, the North has come a long way in understanding the use of constitutional and democratic means to channel legitimate grievances and therefore cannot be part of any undemocratic move.
AYCF expressed disappointment that the governors of the Southeast appear satisfied with IPOB’s activities, expressing hope that IPOB will continue for another ten years.
“We urge the northern governors to take swift action to ensure IPOB does not infiltrate the region.
“We are also expecting that governors seal all shops permanently shut down in solidarity with IPOB,” the group said.
Yarima further stated that they would not fold their arms and watch as the North is further destabilized by a violent strategy, adding that the region already had sufficient insecurity challenges to contend with.
The statement condemned the use of killings and arson to press home a demand that would have been handled by the democratic process in existence.
Nigerians of good conscience should avoid any undemocratic means, including the burning of government-owned structures, where Nigerians legitimately work to feed their families.
‘Igbos in North should stay away’
As well, the Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG) on Monday threatened to revoke the businesses of Igbos in the north who comply with the IPOB’s order to sit at home for one month.
The outlawed group had threatened to direct Igbos across Nigeria to observe a one-month sit-at-home order if the federal government failed to release their leader, Nnamdi Kanu.
In Abuja after the press briefing, the CNG spokesman, Abdul-Azeez Suleiman, described the development as unfortunate, saying the northern youths would not tolerate Igbos complying with IPOB’s directive while they live in the north.
As for the development in the South East, Suleiman said, “We have foreseen this, we have alerted the nation about it, we have alerted the international community about how IPOB conducts its agitations, but we have now been vindicated.”
According to him, the North does not have problems with the North or the Igbos in the North doing business peacefully.
We have seen a new statement by IPOB that directs Igbos living anywhere in Nigeria, including the north, to participate in the one-month sit-at-home.
Almost the entire Igbo population in the north is not intimidated or threatened by anything.
Traders who comply with the IPOB directive in the north will be warned by us that we will definitely take steps to ensure that their business place is revoked.
“We don’t have a problem with IPOB here, or with Igbos here; they are doing their businesses peacefully, but if they comply with that order, that means they are also with those people that are challenging us.”.
He said, “We don’t want any Igbo man to comply with that in the north, but if they want to do it in the south, that’s their problem, not here in the north.”