South-South coordinator of the Ohanaeze Youth Wing, Chief Chinedu Arthur-Ugwa has condemned the alleged attack on Igbos in Oyigbo Local Government Area of Rivers State, saying that the crisis in the area is not a tribal affair.
Arthur-Ugwu Who vehemently condemned the vandalism of state and private owned properties in Rivers State noted that the peaceful protest was unfortunately hijacked, leading to the unlawful destruction and inhuman killing of people, including police officers, adding that anyone found guilty of the crime should face the law.
Speaking in an interview with TNN, the coordinator expressed bitterness over the alleged massacre in Oyigbo. He called on the Rivers State governor, Barr Nyesom Wike to ensure that those responsible for the destruction of properties and killings in the area were apprehended, adding that until investigated and proven, people should not be unlawfully tormented for crime they might have no hand in.
According to him, “the issue happening all over Nigeria should not be tagged to a particular group, no group at all should be targeted, except such group takes responsibility for the vandalizing of properties and inhuman killing that happened in Oyigbo. The protest is a youth affair and youths all over Nigeria has been protesting, so it shouldn’t be tagged to any group.
“The whole Nigeria is saying #EndSARS, end bad leadership and all that, the leadership has inaugurated judicial panel of inquiry to look into it and suggest how best to handle the issue, as well as providing a lasting solution. To me what is happening in Port Harcourt is nothing different, Wike, by the name Wike is an Igbo person, whether he likes it or not, but the most paramount thing now is to ensure that peace is restored in Oyigbo before it gets out of hand.
“From what I read, one of the policemen they killed is an Igbo person, this is not an Igbo affair, it is not a tribal affair, it shouldn’t be tagged as such. The Rivers State governor is the father of all youths in the state, he has the right to summon and call them to order, he is the father of both the good, bad and ugly youth in his state, he should call them to order, for me, what is happening in Oyigbo right now, the killing we are hearing, the starvation, brutalization is not a way forward.
“Igbo people are very peaceful people, our fathers always advise us to be peaceful wherever we are, as Igbos, we are all over the whole world, in Nigeria we are all over the whole state, we are only interested in doing business and looking for our daily bread, we are law abiding, we don’t encourage crisis, we don’t engineer people, we discourage anything that can cause an uproar, we love peace, Igbo in general loves peace.
“The youths were advised not to go beyond peaceful protest, not to start spoiling government properties, governor Wike is the security chief in the state, we in Ohanaeze wouldn’t come into the issue of IPOB because we are not the spokesperson of IPOB, they know how to defend or reply any allegation leveled against them, we are weeping in wonder over how a peaceful protest migrated into a blood bath and gradually turning into a tribal affair. Everybody including the governor supports end SAR s, I heard his speech, at a point he felt like he was standing alone, because he stood against end SARs, it’s unfortunate how such peaceful protest was hijacked by who and who, we don’t know, whoever that is taking responsibility for the hijack should be held responsible.”
Arthur-Ugwu also condemned the burning of police stations, and killing of police officers, stressing that it won’t help. He added that the absence of security personnel on roads and offices is a threat, asking who will defend citizens when there is threat on their lives and properties.
He further appealed to the governor to provide an alternative conducive business area for the displaced Ikoku traders.