…Stop campaign of calumny against Kanu, MASSOB tells Shettima
…IPOB’s agitation, reaction to state of lopsideness —Ex PSC boss
…Accuses Gowon of bias in creation of 12 states
By Peter Okutu, Bashir Bello & Chimaobi Nwaiwu
ABAKALIKI—Former Chief Security Officer to late General Sani Abacha, Major Hamza Al-Mustapha, said Nigerians should expect the end to Biafra agitations soon.
This came as the Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra, MASSOB, weekend, called on Yerima Shettima to stop his campaign of calumny against Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, as the group will not accept or condone anybody associating MASSOB with Ralph Uwazuruike or Biafra Independence Movement, BIM, in the country.
This is even as the former chairman of Police Service Commission, PSC, Chief Simon Okeke, said the agitation by the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, is a reaction to the hopelessness and lopsidedness of successive governments in Nigeria.
Agitations will end soon
Major Al-Mustapha disclosed this while speaking to newsmen at an International peace campaign organised by Awareness for Good Leadership, Peace and Development, in Katsina, weekend.
He said he is working to see the end of the agitations and also working out ways on how to mend issues from within the six geopolitical zones of the North and the South.
He said he has plans to bring together all classes of Nigerians together to identify what the principles of peace is all about in the interest of the nation.
According to him, “I’m already handling that issue of agitations for Biafra. If you have been following what is going on, I’m at the centre of it. And this will come to pass pretty soon and will take a new dimension on how we can mend issues from within the six geopolitical zones or within the North and the South. You will soon see the results and that will soon come to national attention. I left there for here and I’m going back there, God willing.”
Stop campaign of calumny against Kanu
In a statement issued in Abakaliki, National Secretary of MASSOB, Comrade Ugwuoke Ibem Ugwuoke, lambasted Yerima Shettima, leader Arewa Youths Consultative Forum, for allegedly trying to deceive the people of Biafra and create disaffection among the genuine pro-Biafra groups that are committed towards the actualization and restoration of an independent and sovereign state of Biafra.
The statement read in part: “MASSOB is not against BIM or Ralph Uwazuruike. We will not accept or condone anybody associating MASSOB with Uwazuruike even ignorantly.
“MASSOB has a new leader in the person of Comrade Uchenna Madu, the former MASSOB National Director of Information. We still wish to correct Yerima Shettima that the so-called Ojukwu memorial lectures he annually attends in Owerri with tens of Hausa-Fulani people is not MASSOB programme but that of Uwazuruike-led BIM.
“MASSOB advises Yerima Shettima to stop his campaign of calumny against Mazi Nnamdi Kanu and also his propaganda of deceit to paint Uwazuruike a white saint. The people of Biafra know their leaders.”
IPOB’s agitation, reaction to state of lopsideness —Ex PSC boss
Speaking with select journalists during his quarterly news conference in his Akata House, Amichi, Nnewi South Local Government Area, Anambra State, Chief Okeke told Igbo elders and Nigerians who are castigating IPOB leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, to listen to him and address some of the points he has made through IPOB activities.
Chief Okeke, however, stated that secession is not the best option for Ndigbo, rather if there is equitable governance in Nigeria and equity and fairness in doing things in the country, there will be no need for Biafra restoration.
“IPOB’s secession idea is arising from a state of hopelessness and lopsidedness that successive governments in Nigeria have kept Biafrans. The agitation for Biafra restoration is a reaction to some actions of non involvement of Ndigbo in the Nigerian governance.”
Chief Okeke blamed some Nigerian leaders, particularly former Head of State, Gen. Yakubu Gowon (retd) for the woes in the country, saying: “His creation of 12 states, instead of the regional government he met in office, has brought unnecessary agitations by different ethnic groups in Nigeria.
“Gowon created 12 States with jaundice in his head; he created the states to humiliate Ndigbo, by ensuring that Ndigbo who live near the river banks, like today’s Obigbo in Rivers State are lost to other states.”
I pray for Biafran agitation to collapse in 2019—Methodist Prelate
Meanwhile, the Prelate of the Methodist Church of Nigeria, Samuel Uche, has condemned the agitation for the break-up of the country, saying that those championing it were being sponsored by selfish politicians.
“All these campaigns that the Igbo must leave the country or that Biafra must be are all sponsored by politicians who are looking for political power,” Uche said, yesterday, in Ibekwe, Ikot Abasi Local Government Area, Akwa Ibom State, during a thanksgiving church service organised by Managing Director of Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, Nsima Ekere.
Uche prayed: “Any politician who sponsors people to kill others so that they can enter political office will never enjoy that office. I pray that Biafra and all those agitations will crumble in 2019. I am not PDP, APC or APGA. I am for every Nigerian. Nigerians will reject bad leaders in 2019.”
Uche spoke about “great deprivation” in the Niger Delta region and called on the Federal Government to urgently address the problem of the area.
“As a leader of the Methodist, I am saying here that we should allow this area, Niger Delta, to control its resources and pay a certain percentage of money to the centre.”
“Let us practice true federalism,” he said, adding that what is keeping Nigeria one was nothing other than oil.
“All these shouts of one Nigeria, one Nigeria is because of oil.
“If the oil dries up today, it will be to your tents oh Nigeria!”
Mr. Uche said he heard the finance minister say recently that there was improvement in the nation’s economy.
He said he believed the minister but that he would believe her the more when he sees families around him enjoy three square meals daily.
He attacked the nation’s politicians as being greedy lots.
Nigeria has enough to take care of the people’s needs but not enough to satisfy greedy politicians, he said.
“If we spend responsibly what we have, everybody could be taken care of and everybody will be happy.”
The NDDC chief, Mr. Ekere, in his remark during the church service, thanked God for His blessings upon his life and that of his wife.
Mr. Ekere asked Nigerians to continue to pray for President Muhammadu Buhari and the nation.
The event was attended by several dignitaries, including Governor Solomon Lalong of Plateau State, the former governor of Akwa Ibom State, Victor Attah; and the Deputy National Chairman of the All Progressive Congress, APC, Segun Oni, who represented the party’s National Chairman, John Oyegun.