If the Indigenous People of Biafra does not bring its members to order and halt the threats and killings, counter-secessionist organizations may appear in the South-East geopolitical zone, according to Ebonyi State Governor and Chairman of the South-East Governors’ Forum, Dave Umahi.
The push for Biafra, according to Umahi, is “madness,” and the South-East elite do not desire separation, but rather that the zone be treated equally and equitably as other parts of the country.
The governor further promised that secessionist agitators would not turn the South-East zone into a killing field.
Youths in the region who chose the route of agitation to cause crime over discussion to have their issues heard and resolved would be “isolated as criminals,” he added.
The PUNCH monitored Umahi’s appearance on Channels Television’s ‘Sunrise Daily’ breakfast show on Wednesday.
Enyinnaya Abaribe, the Senate Minority Leader who represents Abia South in the upper chamber, revealed on Tuesday that there are more than 30 separatist organizations in the South-East, in addition to IPOB and the Movement for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra.
However, in a television interview on Wednesday, Umahi stated that the two separatist organisations he is aware of are IPOB and MASSOB, and that Abaribe spoke “from the perspective of his information.”
While MASSOB has never been violent, the governor claims that IPOB sends out scare messages and kills people in the zone.
Umahi said, “The separatist groups, we know of IPOB, we know of MASSOB. MASSOB has never been violent and they are approachable and they tend to reason with us but this other people, IPOB, their command is never in the country and every one of them stays out and dishes out messages of bitterness and messages of threats and fear and killings and are not here with us to feel the pains.
“So, these are just the two groups that I can talk about but I fear that if IPOB does not call their people to order and stop these threats and killings and all that, other groups will rise up to counter it but there is no way South-East would be grounded, there is no way South-East will be sitting at home while other parts of the country will be doing businesses whereas we are the people that should be moving because we earn our living by moving.”