The South East Revival Group (SERG) has advised the Federal Government to cautiously handle the appeal for self-determination by the people of the South-East who are pressing for the actualization of the Republic of Biafra before it is too late.
A statement issued by SERG’s National Coordinator, Chief Willy Ezugwu, also demanded the immediate and unconditional release of the Director of Radio Biafra, Nnamdi Kalu, who was arrested in Lagos by the Department of State Service (DSS) when he returned to Nigeria from the United Kingdom.
The statement said that “it is important that the Federal Government acts now before it is too late since the agitation is mostly intellectually driven at this stage.”
Ezugwu said it is sad that those close to the government were dismissing the agitation, manifested through peaceful protests in several cities, as the handwork of hoodlums and paid touts even when it was apparent that those protesting were genuine stakeholders in the Igbo nation’s quest for self-determination.
The statement read, “It is disheartening that this was the same way Nigerians dismissed Boko Haram insurgents as street urchins in the formative years of the terror group and we are all collectively paying the price in tears and blood today. The people of the Igbo nation are currently pursuing their desire through intellectual engagement and peaceful street protests.
“Sadly, security agencies, including the army, have been violently clamping down on these protests in violation of the people’s right to self expression. Those associated with the movement are being thrown in detention and being secretly tried in a desperate effort to stifle the people of the south-east”.
The group condemned what it described as the “penchant for matters related to Igbo people to be criminalized while other ethnic nationalities were allowed to constantly make threats against the country without consequences.
“We demand that the Federal Government immediately put an end to these hostilities by starting with the unconditional release of Nnamdi Kanu and other people arrested in connection with the peaceful protests.
“It must also enter talks with identifiable leaders of the various groups behind the agitation with a view to finding common grounds that will lead to the activation of internationally recognized processes”, SERG said.