By Biodun Busari
The Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) has accused the Defence Headquarters of allegedly publishing fictitious attackers of St Francis Catholic Church, Owo, Ondo state where no fewer than 40 worshippers were murdered on June 5.
IPOB alleged that the names of Owo Catholic Church attackers published by the Defence headquarters were not the actual ones, adding that they should be in Kuje prison, Abuja at the time when the church was invaded and its worshippers killed.
Recall that the army published five names: Momoh Ojo Abubakar, Aliyu Yusuf Itokpka, Auwal Ishaq Onimisi, Idris Ojo and Idris Abdulmalik Omeiza as killers of worshippers.
Reacting, the Governor of Ondo state, Rotimi Akeredolu has issued a statement to the Chief of Defence Staff, Lucky Irabor that one of them Idris Ojo was declared wanted as an escapee when terrorists attacked Kuje prisons on July 5.
IPOB, in a statement on Friday, by its spokesperson, Emma Powerful, faulted the army that how could an inmate in Abuja would partake in an attack that occurred in June and be declared wanted as an escapee again in July.
The separatist group claimed that the names published were fabricated and false to exonerate the real assailants.
The statement partly read: “As the Nigerian army releases their falsehood, fabricated and concocted names, photos of terrorists accused as the attackers of Owo Catholic Church massacre, we the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) wish to tell the Nigeria Government and its compromised security agencies that they are liars.
“IPOB worldwide was waiting for them to come out with these statements to deceive the gullible minds in the society thinking that everybody in Nigeria is shallow-minded. Nigerian army thinks that their usual deception will continue to make headway.
“How could the Nigerian army descend so low to cook up this kind of lies to the public without shame? It’s so sad that in their lies they can’t even lie intelligently.
“The massacre of Owo Catholic faithful happened on Sunday 5th of June, 2022 and Kuje prison attack happened on 5th July 2022.
“The Nigerian army claimed that fictitious names they mentioned were escapees from Kuje prison. Will it be that the named persons travelled from Abuja to Owo to massacre the people at the Church and afterwards returned back to Kuje prison yard? The Nigerian army should please explain more and stop dragging themselves into the mud.
“It is now crystal clear to all and sundry that all the insurgency, terrorist attacks, unknown gunmen and all criminal activities in the South-East and South-West were cover-up by the Nigerian government through her Security Agencies.”
The Nnamdi Kanu-led group, therefore, called on the international community to intervene and hold the Nigerian government responsible for insecurity in the country.
“The Foreign Missions and other Agencies in Nigeria; Canadian mission, Israeli Ambassador, Italian Ambassador, Germany mission, Russian mission, China, Japan, Australia, Britain commission, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Intersociety and other reputable Human Rights organisations should hold Nigeria Government responsible for all the sponsored insecurity.
“The above fictitious names of the supposed Owo Catholic faithful killers published are most likely innocent people or the prisoners,” it added.