An Igbo youth group the Ohanaeze Youth Council, OYC, has petitioned the United Nations, UN, asking the world body to beam its searchlight on Northern Nigeria, following threats of genocide against the Igbos living there from October 1 this year.
Recall that some Northern groups have threatened to evict Igbos from the North from October 1 and sieze their properties amounting to billions, an action which would qualify as a crime against humanity, as the International Criminal Court sees genocide as any killing, persecution or eviction of members of an ethnic group because of their ethnic identity.
The letter signed by the group’s national president, Mazi Okechukwu Isiguzoro, and entitled: “A CALL FOR EMERGENCY IN NIGERIA- OUR TWO-POINT DEMAND,” reads in part:
“It is with great concern that we alert the international community of the looming genocide against the Igbos in the Northern part of Nigeria, occasioned by a well-orchestrated, carefully thought-after plot by the Northern hierarchy, who are hiding under the Arewa Youths.
“Their latest ranting, which they packaged a letter to the Acting President has left no one in doubt as to their motive: A GRAND DESIGN TO ANNIHILATE THE IGBO RACE. This, they want to achieve so easily through the well packaged false history, which they have now dished out to gullible minds in order to create a passion hatred for the Igbos in the minds of their people and thereby easily achieve the October 1 planned mayhem against our people.
“How else could one justify their attempt to stab history in the back by labelling the first military coup in Nigeria as an Igbo coup? How else could people twist history than their justifying the pogrom against the Igbos between 1966 and 1967, which eventually led to the civil war? In what measure can one justify the insult on our late leaders, in the persons of Late Gen. Aguiyi Ironsi and Late Col. Chukwuemeka Odumewgu Ojukwu?
“In Igbo land, we have respect not only for the elders, but more so for the dead and it if is for that purpose that we chose not to go further into this matter. Truth cannot never be changed. However, we must let these youths and their pay-masters know that contrary to their claims, our people have made much more sacrifices for the unity of this country, starting from the later Owelle of Onitsha, Nnamdi Azikiwe.
“To also justify their planned killing of every Igbo man remaining with the Biafra agitation amounts to hypocrisy of the highest magnitude. May we remind them for over a decade now, the Boko Haram did not just declare war on the Nigerian State but has gone ahead to seize territories, killed thousands of thousand and rendered millions homeless, yet nobody has branded it an action signed by the entire North. Besides, like the Arewa Youths pointed out in their hypocritical letter, the Biafra agitators have their demand for self-determination found in so many characters, including that of the UN, for which Nigeria is a signatory to. Where does the Boko Haram derive its own right to be engaging in mass murder?
“Our point here, however, is not on the propriety or otherwise of the attempt by Boko Haram to take over every Nigerian Nigeria territory or the Biafra agitation, but the difficult attempt by the Arewa Youths to link every Igbo man with the activities of the IPOB. If it is so, suffice it to say that all of them are members of the Boko Haram sect.
“May we also state that contrary to their claims that Ndigbo were being accommodated in every part of the country, our people have continued to be slaughtered like chickens, especially in the North, without justifiable reason. The case of Mrs. Bridget Agbahime, a pastor’s wife, who was murdered in cold blood will speak against these youths. The manner her case was muzzled by the Kano State Government will make her blood to cry forever against her shameless murderers.
The world must not allow the 1966 pogrom of Igbos to repeat itself.