We won’t secede but make Igbos feel included in Nigeria’s polity, Southeast Govs, monarchs tell FG
By Ekene Agbor, Osogbo
Southeast Governors and nominated stakeholders in the zone have met with delegates from the federal government to discuss pressing needs of the zone, as well as how to make people of the Southeast feel included in Nigeria’s polity.
For the Igbo leaders, they are strongly against secession adding that they believe in one Nigeria mantra. But they asked that Igbos should be included in the polity of the nation.
The delegates led by the Chief of Staff to President Muhammadu Buhari, Professor Agboola Ibrahim Gambari is to convey to Mr President the grievances of people of the Southeast geopolitical zone for onward action to better the lot of the people and regain their confidence in one Nigeria mantra.
Members of the delegation at the meeting include Inspector of Police, IG Adamu Muhammad, Minister of Information, Alhaji Lai Muhammad, Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, Minister of Science and Technology, Ogbonnaya Onu, Minister of State Environment, Sharon Ikeazor, among others.
The meeting which was held at the Enugu state Government House, reveal the minds of Ndi Igbo to the government of Nigeria in anticipation of positive action by the federal government towards addressing the issue raised by various leaders in the zone.
The meeting which was presided over by the Chairman, Southeast Governors Forum and Governor of Ebonyi state, Engineer Dave Umahi, was attended by the governors of the zone, including Governor of Enugu state, Dr Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, that of Abia, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu, Imo state Governor, Mr Hope Uzodimma and Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra state represented by his deputy, Dr Nkem Okeke.
Among other stakeholders in the zone present at the event include the Chairman Southeast Traditional Rulers Council and the Traditional Ruler of Onitsha, Igwe Nnaemeka Achebe, President of Ohaneze Ndi Igbo worldwide, Chief Nnia Nwodo, among others.
The event also had in attendance representatives of various traditional, religious, women, and youth groups.
Here is the full details of the meeting:
COMMUNIQUE ISSUED AT THE END OF A MEETING OF SOUTH EAST LEADERS WITH PRESIDENTIAL DELEGATION TO SOUTH EAST ON SATURDAY, 7″ NOVEMBER, 2020, AT THE EXECUTIVE COUNCIL
CHAMBERS, LION BUILDING, GOVERNMENT HOUSE, ENUGU
After an intensive deliberation and dialogue in a meeting with the
presidential delegation led by Prof. Ibrahim A. Gambari, Chief of Staff to
Mr. President with the Inspector General of Police, Director General,
Department of State Services, Hon. Minister of Information, Federal
Ministers from South East with South East Governors and her leaders, today, 7 November, 2020, at Enugu Government House, we the
leaders of the South East made up of all the Governors, South East
National Assembly members, Federal Ministers of South East, Clergy
men and women, Traditional Rulers, Representatives of all the youth organizations in the South East, and student leadership, have resolved
1. We thank Mr. President for sending this powerful delegation to visit our people and hear from us.
2. We thank Mr. President for all the great works he is doing at the second Niger Bridge, the Akanu Ibiam International Airport,
dualized road of Enugu to Port Harcourt and some other projects in the South East.
3. Mr. President, we thank you so much for all your kind
commitment in the struggle of our sister, Prof. Okonjo lweala to become the DG of the World Trade Organization. We are
particularly grateful with the way you have engaged the world leaders to see her through the process. May God crown your efforts with success- Amen.
4. We request a joint operation into all our forests to flush out criminals and killer herdsmen with AK47, while pledging our
commitment to continuous co-existence with herdsmen who have been living peacefully with us for years.
5. We pledge our undivided support and love to our President and his administration.
6. We, lgbo leaders stand for an indivisible and united Nigeria, built on love, fairness, equity and justice. We believe that under this
platform, we are bigger and stronger.
7. We thank Mr. President for the speed and restraint with which he handled the demand of peaceful ENDSARS protesters, especially his commitment to drive Police Reform and mainstream youth empowerment and also for his courage to deal with hoodlums, criminals and those who hi-jacked the initial protests, to hide
under the peaceful protest and kill, maim innocent citizens, security agents and public and private properties.
8. We sympathize with the families of civilians and security agencies, who lost their lives and properties during the ENDSARS protests (both peaceful and criminal protests).
9. South East Governors have set up Panels of Enquiry to deal with all infractions of human rights of our people and security agencies, compensation funds for all civilians and security men who lost their lives during the protest. We have also set up empowerment/employment fund to help more of our youth earn their lawful daily means of livelihood.
10. We, therefore, with humility, request our President, the father of our nation, to please look into the demands of the various groups of our people, as presented today, review same with a view to solving them. South East people believe in one Nigeria and this is the reason we are in every part of this country
erecting infrastructures, living peacefully with our host communities and doing our businesses.
11. We pledge to continue to protect all the various ethnic groups living in South East. We enjoin them to go about their businesses peacefully. We thank Mr. President, Governors and traditional rulers in other parts of Nigeria for their commitment to protect our people, especially during and after the protests. We must continue to live in peace.
12. We appreciate Mr. President’s delegation for carefully listening to, engaging with stakeholders and undertaking to report
faithfully to Mr. President for his consideration and necessary action.
13. We request Mr. President to commit the various presentations of all of us – Traditional Rulers, Religious leaders, the women group, the Ohaneze leadership and the youth groups,
and give full support to actualizing these genuine demands.
14. We wish Mr. President’s delegation journey mercies as they travel back, as we pray to God to continue to guard our Presidents health and guide him, as he pilots the affairs of our
HE, Engr. David Nweze Umahi, FNSE, FNATE.
Governor, Ebonyi State and
Chairman, South East Governors’ Forum