By Dennis Agbo
The World Igbo Congress, WIC, opposed the deployment of the army to the southeast under the guise of Operation Golden Dawn.
WIC said the offer is another form of Operation Phyton Dance, where Igbo youth are once again slaughtered, much to the joy of trigger-happy soldiers.
The group wondered what had happened to the Nigerian police who have a constitutional mandate to fight civil unrest if it exists in the southeast.
The WIC said it could not ignore the possibility that the deployment of troops and weapons was part of a grand plan to incite unrest in Igboland, cause loss of life and destruction of properties (public and private) and with the immediate presence of heavily armed troops, declares the region ungovernable.
In a statement written by WIC President Professor Anthony Ejiofor and Public Relations Officer Mazi Basil Onwukwe, the group said the Igbo Nation and lovers of truth and justice see Operation Golden Dawn as a prelude to the bloody red dawn.
The group said: â€œWIC notes that all arms of the military, as well as the police and other paramilitary formations are involved in this exercise. It is revealing that the maintenance of public order among the civilian populations is now the responsibility of the army as opposed to the police, whose statutory responsibility includes the maintenance of public order in society.
â€œWIC further notes the irony and importance of launching the exercise in Enugu when similar exercises are supposed to take place simultaneously in other locations. Smart minds can see through this subterfuge that regions and states that are in serious need of peacekeeping (Zamfara, Katsina, Niger, Sokoto, etc.), are not covered by this exercise.
â€œWIC fears the stage may be set for a repeat of the atrocities of the ugly and murderous python dance that has consumed the lives of hundreds of young Igbo people. SFOC has already ordered the so-called â€œunknown shootersâ€ to â€œsurrender their weapons or face the brute force of the exerciseâ€.
“Please, if these ghost figures are unknown, how and why do we expect them to comply with this order?”
â€œThe WIC suspects that this order is designed to empower armed troops to subject our people to an orgy of abuse, intimidation, unlawful searches and detention, and even extrajudicial killings, all under the pretext of investigating and killing. ‘eliminate the’ unknown shooters’.
â€œWIC also notes the recent outbreak of violence in Anambra State which has claimed the lives of many innocent citizens. Most of these heinous crimes were brazenly committed in broad daylight, but we are not aware of any arrests of suspects.
“Could it be that there is a deliberate suspension of official police protection for citizens or that the perpetrators are somehow untouchable?” Curious minds need to know.
â€œPeople are wondering if the state of emergency (as requested by the Federal Attorney General and the Minister of Justice) is the real reason why all these things are happening in Igboland.
â€œWIC regrets the inability or unwillingness of our Southeastern governments to protect the lives, property and livelihoods of our people. The just concluded SE Governors Summit resulted in another announcement of the formation of the Ebubeagu Security Outfit! Unless we’ve dreamed of it, we believe this same outfit launched with a bang in 2020.
â€œIn fact, General Umahi (rtd), brother of Ebonyi State Governor Dave Umahi, the leader of the group resigned in protest against the lack of attention and / or support from the governors, to whom his committee submitted a safety report in 2019 that was ignored until 2020.
â€œWIC feels the pain of our people as they experience this self-inflicted wound of leadership failure. We call on state governors and the political class to do what they are paid to do: lead and rule! It is unreasonable to allow the current situation to deteriorate further.
â€œThe WIC urges our suffering masses to remain calm and avoid giving excuses to the invading troops to wreak havoc on them. Another death is one too many! We have suffered enough.