A group known as Southern Nigeria Youths has warned the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) to stop provoking war in Nigeria, with its recent announcement banning the Nigerian flag in the South East region, especially during the October 1 Independence Day Anniversary celebration.
The group warned that the action is provocative, and an open invitation to war.
“Enough of this provocation against the federal government by IPOB; let them pursue their agitation for secession legally. They are endangering the lives and welfare of their people with their ungodly orders and activities.
“The federal government may decide to respond to their recent banning of our national flag by sending a large number of troops into the region to protect lives and properties of law-abiding citizens, and this action may have casualties that will affect both the South-South and South-West sub-regions negatively.
Christian Abeh, Coordinator of the group, Christian Abeh, in a statement today, September 28, said that IPOB’s action is a threat to the existence of citizens not only in the South East region but in South-South and South-West geopolitical regions.
“We received information of an alleged banning of our national flag in the entire Southeastern part of the country by members of IPoB with rude shock, considering the fact that most of these people do not know the true meaning of crossing the boundary,” the group said.
“In as much as we do not want to dabble into IPoB’s activities, we will not fold our arms and watch few individuals residing outside the shores of this country bring indignation on the entire sub-region and by extension Southern Nigeria.
“IPoB should have lobbied their members in the National Assembly, traditional rulers and state governors to demand a referendum where every citizen of their sub-region will vote, than making callous and provocative statements that are capable of setting the sub-region ablaze.
“It is a well-known fact that the South-East is not a conquered region in Nigeria of today, but the illegal and ungodly activities of IPoB in the region will leave the Federal Government with no option than to send a large number of troops to the sub-region and militarize it in order to forestall any act of forceful/illegal secession, confrontation, and terrorism.
”It is the duty of the Federal Government to protect lives and properties of her citizens in every part of the country, including the South-East.
“Therefore, the government should not be blamed for unleashing its military might on troublemakers in the land.
“Under our present constitution, nobody has the right to declare the banning of our national flag in any part of the country; doing so is an invitation to war against the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“While we are complaining about the Monday sit-at-home order that is terribly affecting the people and economy of that sub-region, they are now pushing the provocation further through indirect war declaration by banning our national flag as from October 1st, 2021.
“We cannot continue to keep quiet as a people from the same Southern region while these few people destroy their sub-region in particular and entire region in general. Like they say; a mad man does not know he is mad. And we cannot wait for the mad man to destroy treasures before we pounce on him for the little items he destroyed.
“We are tired of having IDP camps in the country, and we do not want more.
“The traditional rulers, clergies, and political leaders should prevail on these people to drop this idea of trying to engage the federal government because their people will be the worst hit while most of these elements will escape to neighbouring countries.
“It is high time leaders from the region speak out and openly condemn the activities of these boys, except they are in support of the banning of our national identity (flag) and other assets of the government, and you do not expect the federal government to fold its arms and watch helplessly.”
IPOB had announced on Saturday, September 25 that it had banned the hoisting of the Nigerian flag in the South East, with effect from that day, September 25. It also said it would enforce the sit-at-home order on October 1, Nigeria’s independence day.