The Minority Leader of the Senate house,
Enyinnaya Abaribe on Tuesday, spoke up against the killing of peaceful Igbo
Youths in Emene, Enugu, last Sunday by members of the Nigerian armed forces.
According to the Senator who has often
spoken up against the Marginalization of Igbo people in Nigeria, the killings
of Igbo people has given room to wide suspicion of a sinister motive.
He also said that the naming of every
Igbo group as a terrorist organization and the incessant killing of Igbo people
by members of the Nigerian armed forces has become one-too-many and is no
Abaribe made his displeasure over the
killings known in a statement issued in Abuja by his Media Adviser, Uchenna
Awom, titled ‘Abaribe condemns Igbo youths’ killings in Enugu’.
In the statement, the Senator tasked the
Enugu state Governor, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi to set up a judicial panel which will
help unravel the truth in the assertions of both sides of the story on what
In his words, “disheartening that
security operatives seem to derive pleasure at any slight whim to unleash
mayhem, using the most lethal weapons against unarmed Igbo youths at every
turn. Such unsavoury, brutal and hateful resort to extreme repression, demean
Nigeria’s democratic ethos and even question her unity,” he said.
He also said,
“We are in a democracy where every
agency of government, particularly the security apparatchik must adhere
strictly to rules of engagement with regards to dealings with the civil
populace in such a manner that will be in conformity with international best
“The last time I checked, Nigerians
still enjoy the freedom to associate freely. Nobody has told us that the Igbo
youths meeting last Sunday was a gathering meant to launch an attack on
“Who will they attack and for what? What
informed the police and DSS deployment to the venue of the meeting?
“Incontrovertible reports suggest very
strongly that the killings were ignited when the security operatives stormed
the venue of that peaceful meeting, not that the youths marched to anywhere to
“These are the issues that should be
addressed at the panel,” Abaribe said.
Senator Abaribe also lamented that it was a thing of worry that the people can no longer gather peacefully in their country without being dispersed forcefully or branded terrorists for no justifiable reason. And also that he wouldn’t want to believe that the wide card labelling of every Igbo Youth group as terrorists is a cover to achieve a predetermined plot as is widely speculated. He also advised the federal government against having an army of occupation in the South East, working to create a state of anomie in the most peaceful region in the country.
Then, he advised the youth to remain
calm and not resort to reprisals or succumb to any form of provocations which
could give rise to the armed forces taking laws into their own hands.
He concluded by saying, “We await the official
reaction of the Enugu State Governor on the matter.”