The Indigenous People of Biafra has said the Nigerian government has been making frantic efforts to buy its leader, Nnamdi Kanu so that he will stop agitating for the breakaway of Biafra from Nigeria.
IPOB said this while reacting to a statement made by the Presidency through the presidential media aide, Garba Shehu on Wednesday that the military will soon crush members of the secessionist group in the South-East.
Shehu had claimed that the secession agenda and activities in Nigeria were no more thriving due to the failure of secessionists to intimidate and extort money from President Muhammadu Buhari.
This was contained in a media interaction he had at the secretariat of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Abuja.
He assured that the recent spate of insecurity in the South-East would soon be a thing of the past, as the army would soon crush criminals terrorising the zone.
“One thing is that you can’t intimidate Buhari. You can’t bully him. A lot of these people who are calling for secessions are the problem of this country and I am happy that reasonable opinion and reasonable voices are now rising. Is it not only yesterday we were reading Afenifere, the most credible faction of Afenifere saying we are not for secession? Ohanaeze has said this over and over again. So this thing about secession is, they had used it in the past.
“You create secession and break up Nigeria and then you intimidate the sitting leader and then he opens the vault and brings money to settle people. President Buhari will pay no one. He is not going to pay, and now it is clear that having ignored all of that, reasonable opinions are coming from those states and from those regions. We have all heard the governors in South West denounced all of these things. So it’s a sham, Nigerians want to be one, they want to continue. Yes, there are problems and we are hoping that as people united and loving of one another, we will come together and solve our problems,” Shehu had said.
Reacting, IPOB spokesman, Emma Powerful, in a statement made available to Translator Nigeria News on Thursday, dared the Presidency to mention the names of the people extorting money from President Buhari.
“The attention of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) under the command and leadership of our great and indomitable leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, has been drawn over the ranting, derogatory, irresponsible and highly provocative remarks by the Presidency through Garba Shehu that the renewed agitation for self-determination in the South-East was because the federal government had refused to share money to those behind the agitation. Shehu went further in his vituperations and threatened military action to crush those he referred to as “the animals disturbing the peace of South East.
“We, therefore, challenge Shehu to mention those the federal government has been paying in the South-East to drop the agitation for self-determination. If he fails to disclose the identities of the beneficiaries and evidence of such payments, we will take it to be one of the shameless lies which have become the trademark of the Muhamnadu Buhari-led Fulani-controlled federal government.
“Without speaking for other proponents of self-determination, we know that the federal government of Nigeria has been making frantic but fruitless efforts to induce the leadership of IPOB with money to possibly drop the quest for Biafran restoration,” the statement partly read.
Insisting that the Nigerian government had made several futile attempts to buy Kanu so he would dump his Biafra agenda, the group said, “Federal Government has at everal times but without success, attempted to buy over our leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, making him some irresistible offers. But if there were any Efulefus parading self as Igbo leader that accepted their offer, we can assure them that such Efulefus cannot penetrate IPOB. IPOB is not, has never been, and will never be interested in the crumbs from the federal government of Nigeria.
“We also wish to remind the Fulani Presidency that only a certified and unconscionable moron will ever equate money to the motive behind the growing agitation for self-determination across Nigeria. If money is what we want, we know what to do to get more money. How many times in the past did our leader reject your financial inducements? If you know those people that asked the late Buhari, Jubril Al Sudani or Yusuf Abubakar Mohammad for money, we are begging you to please publish their names.
“As a people, Biafrans are enterprising and we don’t think we are behind any region in terms of affluence and economic security despite the oppressive policies of this 97 per cent versus 5 per cent government targeted against our hard-working illustrious sons and daughters and the monopolistic tendencies of the Fulani Janjaweed.
“Our aim for Biafra agitation is freedom! We are tired of sharing a geographical space with terrorists. We are tired of being ruled by government officials who dine and wine with terrorists but brutalise and kill law-abiding freedom fighters. We are tired of being ruled by a government that pays ransom to bandits, frees terrorists but jails unarmed protesters. We are tired of an oppressive government that promotes nepotism and injustice.
“Nothing can change our resolve to free Biafra from the Nigeria bondage. No amount of propaganda by the government can make us change our mind. In case Shehu and his Presidency don’t know, Biafra is more imminent than they think. The night is far spent, and the new dawn is almost here with the Rising Sun of our great nation at the threshold!
“The threat by the Presidency to order military operation to crush the animals disturbing the peace in South-East, has simply confirmed our alarm all the while that the federal government is the one sponsoring the escalating insecurity in the zone to provide an excuse for another military operation to kill more innocent Biafrans. It’s only unfortunate that the political elite for their selfish interests have failed to realise this.
“But we ask the Presidency to first crush the bandits and terrorists overrunning the entire North and Middle Belt before embarking on any military operation in the South-East, otherwise they may have to prepare very well.”