Ohaneze Ndigbo Likens Unwarranted Attacks on Igbos in Lagos to Pre-Civil War Occurrences

The continued attacks, harassment and intimidation Igbos suffer in many parts of the country, especially in Lagos, has been likened to the hostilities Igbos faced in the North in the late 60s that sparked the Nigeria Civil War.

This is according to Chief Damian Okeke-Ogene, the Vice President Ohaneze Ndigbo, the apex Igbo socio-cultural group.

In the build-up to the Governorship elections in Lagos State, there were destruction of property belonging to Igbos, as well as burning of business premises belonging to the Igbos.

Some persons acting on their personal capacity and suspectedly for the State Government had also death threats to them, if they dare vote against the ruling party in the state, the All Progressives Congress, APC.

Some of such threats were also made good during the conduct of the exercise as persons were killed and others maimed.

There were also incidences of voter suppression and intimidation recorded in some parts of the state.

Speaking to TNC correspondent in Awka, the Ohaneze Ndigbo National Vice President, regretted that Igbos could be subjected to such inhumane treatment in Lagos state, where they contribute a significant quotient of the state resources.

Okeke-Ogene said more worrisome is the silence of the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, the President-Elect, Bola Ahmed Tinubu and the President Muhammadu Buhari, on the whole issue.

“It is a pity what happened in Lagos. Igbos were killed, maimed and harassed as if they don’t belong to this country again.

“This was exactly what happened that caused the Civil war and they blamed Igbos for seeking independence.

“You can imagine the character of the supposed APC leaders, which Tinubu and Sanwo-Olu are at the helm, because I cannot say it’s Yoruba people. The way they treat Igbos that pay more than 90% of tax that they use to develop Lagos is distasteful.

“Was it only in Lagos that the elections held? Look at the North and other parts of the country where elections held peacefully including Abuja.
“Why Lagos? A state that benefits so much from the Igbos.

“This is quite unfortunate, the hate speech that comes out of the mouth of the President-Elect and APC spokes persons and the Federal Government is quiet about it,” he lamented.

The Ohaneze leader, however observed that at the root of the whole humiliation of Igbos in Lagos, is the absence of a coordinated Southeast Governors’ Forum.

According to him, had there been a well-organized Igbo Governors’ Forum, they would have been able to reach out to their Lagos counterpart to end the anomaly.

“This is the point where I also blame our political leaders especially the governors.

“There is no reason why they cannot reach out to Sanwo-Olu to prevail on him to stop the killings.

“We know the problem is not from Afenifere, it is political.

“There are also Igbos in APC who know these things that are happening and they are also keeping quiet because of the party they belong to,” he noted.

Okeke-Ogene urged Ndigbo in Lagos not to take laws into their hands, assuring them that they are in talks with relevant organizations and soon, succour will come their way.

He said; “We are at the point where we want to assemble all Igbos in Lagos to meet with the state government because we have held our people for too long.

“I don’t know for how long we will continue like this.”

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