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Igbo youth report Oba of Lagos to Prez Mahama
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General News of Friday, 17 April 2015

Source: Bruce Misbahu Bulmuo

Igbo youth report Oba of Lagos to Prez Mahama

The Igbo Youth Forum, an umbrella body of Igbos living outside Nigeria has petitioned Ecowas chairman and president of Ghana HE John Dramani Mahama, over what they consider to be very unsavoury comments and a direct threat against Igbos by the Oba of Lagos, Oba Rilwan Akiolu, shortly before the general elections held in Nigeria.
“On April 5th, the Oba of Lagos, Oba Rilwan Akiolu spoke to a gathering, made up of Igbo monarchs overseeing the affairs of Ndigbo in Lagos at his palace, and said as follows: “…if anyone of you (Igbos) goes against Akin Ambode that I picked, that is your end”, the petitioned quoted the Oba as saying.
The petitioned was signed by the Coordinator of the Forum, Nze Valentine Ugo-Akpe Onwuka Oyi of Oyi II, Director of media and publicity, Chief Louis Uchegbu Okorie, Director of operations, Mr Green Ndume, Senior adviser, Dr Kingsley Okoronkwo, and the Patron of the group, Prince Emmanuel Okeson.
“We are saddened by this very worrisome development in a country which is making great strides in democracy; a nation which is made up of over 300 ethnic and whose constitution guarantees, freedom of association, and freedom of residence in any of its parts, irrespective of one’s state or community of origin”.
The preferred candidate of the Oba of Lagos, Akinwunmi Ambode has since won the governorship of Lagos State on the ticket of the All Progressive Congress, which became the first opposition party in Nigeria to defeat an incumbent regime.
The Igbos are still not comfortable and they believe that fanatics can take to the literal meaning of the comments of the Oba and unleash mayhem on Igbos residing in Lagos and other states, particularly in the south and north of the country.
The Igbo Youth Forum is also not comfortable with comment made by some security capos in Nigeria that the Oba did not mean what he said and also what he was quoted as saying should not be taken as a threat.
“We must draw the attention of the rest of the world to the very threatening comments made by the Oba, and remind ourselves of the fact that everywhere Igbos have been killed, the perpetrators acted based on declarations which security forces and analysts regarded as mere words, until the massacre began and happened” the petition said.

“It is most important to remind the Oba, the Governor and people of Lagos, that Igbos have not just been guests, but have been partners and to that extent, stakeholders in the building and advancement of the Lagos dream. Idumota, Alaba, Ikeja, and Ajao estates, and many other places in Lagos have enjoyed the massive support of Igbo. The Tinubu and Fashola successes cannot be discussed without the contribution of Igbo”.

The Igbos constitute about 30 million of the population in Nigeria and they are located in the southeastern part of the country although their presence is widely felt in every other part of the country. Attempt by the group to secede from the country led to the Biafra war of 1966, which saw the killing and displacement of women and children.

“Igbos are very peace-loving people, who have suffered in many situations because they have lived among people of other ethnic groups, the same ethnic groups who enjoyed maximum hospitality among the communities of the Igbos. By the statement of Oba Rilwan, Igbos are being threatened again, and this time they are being threatened with the consequence of exercising their franchise as citizens of our great country and residents of Lagos state, a violation of their fundamental human rights”.

The leadership of the Igbo Youth Forum is therefore calling on the leadership of Ecowas and other world leaders to open investigations into the comments made by the Oba.

“Let the world know, let the world act, may the ECOWAS leadership, and other world leaders, and that of Nigeria and Lagos State especially not sit down and watch. We are demanding that the ECOWAS officially open this case and investigate Oba of Lagos, Oba Rilwan Akiolu’s statements to forestall an impending catastrophe”. The petition concludes.

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