By Peter Okutu, Ugochukwu Alaribe & Chimaobi Nwaiwu
ABA—Over 5,000 members of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, yesterday, embarked on a protest march in Aba, Abia State, threatening that nobody can stop the actualization of a sovereign state of Biafra.
The group, who wore black attire and Biafra emblems, marched from the Ariaria International Market through Faulks Road to Okigwe Road.
A cross-section of them, who spoke to newsmen, said they were protesting the statement allegedly made by President Muhammadu Buhari that he would crush Biafra.
They threatened that there will be no peace in Nigeria until freedom is granted to an independent state of Biafra.
“We are protesting against President Buhari’s statement that he will crush Biafra. We want to assure him that nobody can crush Biafra, not even a thousand Buharis. It will surprise him that Biafra will be actualized during his reign as Nigeria’s President. Buhari supports Western Sahara and Palestine to be granted sovereignty while he continues to suppress Biafra.”
The protest, which was peaceful, caused heavy gridlock on the dilapidated Faulks Road causing motorists to move at snail speed while others diverted to other routes.
While the protest lasted, police patrol teams moved around the city while soldiers were on standby to provide security.
Efforts to contact the spokesman of the Abia State Police command, DSP Ezekiel Onyeke, proved abortive as at the time of filing this report.
Similarly, the Movement for the Actualization of Sovereign State of Biafra MASSOB, yesterday, stressed that President Buhari and his administration cannot stop the agitation for Biafra state.
Reacting to the President’s statement, MASSOB leader, Comrade Uchenna Madu urged the President to mind the way he talks on issues that borders on Nigeria’s diplomatic relations with other strong nations.
“Buhari’s statement can be described as that of a frustrated man, who has lost focus on international policy regulations and charter on self-determination.
“He talks with military mentality of 1960 during Nigeria-Biafra war, not knowing that the methods and strategy of the current Biafra struggle for restoration differs from the old one.
“The world now is a global village and autocratic and tyrannical leadership doesn’t prevail in this present world. Biafra struggle is a survival and advancement which Buhari can never stop. Obasanjo, Yar’Adua and Jonathan could not stop it.”
IPOB in a statement titled “Forced back to the trenches”, and signed by its spokespersons Emma Mmezu and Clifford Iroanya, it said “it was challenged by President Muhammadu Buhari’s statement in his home State in Katsina that there will be no Biafra under him and he will use all the resources under his disposal to crush any agitation for the division of Nigeria.
“It is with a profound sense of responsibility, that we make public our reasons for quietly rolling out one of our 48 zones on the streets today, Tuesday 10th May, 2016. The reasons for this unplanned peaceful
march are as follows: We are pained by the statement General Buhari made yesterday in Kastina, that the whole of Nigerian would rather perish, than our people to be free from bondage.
“We view that position as the mindset of a man who does not know what to do with power, It is a pity that the man cannot see that this unitary and hostile prison under his leadership called Nigerian, cannot survive much longer. He seem not to be clearly in touch with reality” they said.
IPOB said “the belief by the Nigeria president that killing us in cold blood as his armed forces have been doing will force us to fall in love with his dream unitary empire, where injustice, nepotism and hate reign, it is laughable. Our message to him is short and precise: our freedom is unstopable”.
“Our second reason for marching peacefully today in Aba Abia state is to pay homage with this solidarity march to our great leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, for his tenacity and commitment to truth and to inform him, that political comedians on the payroll of our enemies are busy entertaining the public in their wild claim to IPOB leadership.
“These despicable clowns, who range from an 86 year old great grandfather who once ran an Igbo organization aground, to a bearded confused man, who is better known as a property grabber, have only succeeded in letting the world know that the enemy is scared of your able leadership, even from undeserved incarceration, hence their
resort to sponsoring these jesters, in the false hope, that they could instigate fake leadership crises in IPOB.
“Shame on them. We proudly declare Sir, that we are totally committed body, soul and spirit to Nnamdi Kanu leadership, for better for worse. On Kanu we stand, Biafra actualization is not negotiable and anybody who thinks that he will stop us by crushing us will be crushed by Chukwu Abiama (Almignty God) who has been fighting our battles in Nigeria”.
IPOB gave another reason for its protest in Aba as, “Finally, we are marching in solidarity and in honour of over 200 of our members killed in cold blood by this blood thirsty regime. And the over 100 others who are still missing and to state to the whole world that your death will not be in vain”.
“As the adversaries stagger in confusion, we assure them that no amount of extra judicial killings, false accusation and brutal intimidation will stop our march to freedom. We are about to cross the red sea, we are confident of what will soon happen to pharaoh and his chariots, we can sight the promised land, victory is assured” they said.