From Stanley Uzoaru, Owerri
Coalition of South East Youth Leaders (COSEYL), an umbrella body of Igbo youth leaders in Nigeria, has attributed the onslaught by gunmen in Anambra State, especially on the home town of Governor Chukwuma Soludo, to his pledge to mobilise South East governors to effect Nnamdi Kanu’s release.
The group claimed Soludo’s move may have offended some people feeding fat from the security challenge in the South East. The President General of the group, Goodluck Ibem, who stated this in a statement, yesterday, accused the aggrieved people or groups of working against the suspension of sit-at-home order by its initiators, the Indigenous People of Biafra(IPOB), because of their selfish interest.
“The Coalition of South East Youth Leaders after a careful study and analysis of the burning and destruction of local government council secretariats in Anambra State, unprovoked attacks on innocent people by gunmen and targeted attack on the residence of Executive Governor of Anambra State, Prof Charles Soludo, can authoritative say that the gunmen are after the governor because of his move to mobilise South East governors and other Igbo leaders to negotiate the release of Nnamdi Kanu, currently in DSS custody in Abuja. Governor Soludo, after his swearing-in, made a categorical statement that he was going to mobilise his colleagues and notable Igbo leaders to secure the release of Nnamdi Kanu and called on civil servants to go to work on mondays.
“After making the statement, heavens were let loose as gunmen and arsonists from nowhere started burning down local government secretariats in the state and even made an attempt to attack the house of the governor, which was resisted by security agents on duty around his house, though one police personnel paid the supreme price on the day of the attempted attack on Soludo’s residence.
“The actions of the gunmen showed that they were not interested in the release of Nnamdi Kanu, but only wanted the Monday sit-at-home to remain and not be tempered with, despite being cancelled by IPOB leadership which was made known by their spokesman, Emma Powerful. The sponsors of these gunmen don’t want Nnamdi Kanu released, maybe, because of their personal benefits, which will cease if Kanu is released, hence the attack on anyone who dares to make a move to secure the release of Nnamdi Kanu.
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(Continued on www.sunnewsonline.com)
“Several South East governors, before now, made statements condemning the Monday sit-at-home and asking their citizens and servants to go to work and the heavens were not let loose. Why then is Anambra on fire and the heavens let loose? The answer is simple. Because Soludo included in his own statement that ‘I will mobilise other South East governors to secure the release of Nnamdi Kanu from DSS custody’. That statement alone is what triggered all the attacks on Anambra and Soludo’s administration.
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“Some people are getting heavy financial benefits over the incarceration of Nnamdi Kanu in DSS custody. If Nnamdi Kanu returns, their business will cease to flourish and they will not be getting money, hence the attack on anyone who wants to secure the release of Nnamdi Kanu from DSS custody.”
Recalling the incident where an INEC staff was killed in Ihitte Uboma Local Government Area of Imo State, Ibem queried: “What is the wisdom in killing your own blood brother in order to send a message to people who are not Igbo. Blood, they say, is thicker than water. No sane man or woman will kill his own brother to send a message to a foreigner, no one. Even a mad man will find it very difficult to kill his own brother. What is happening today is not agitation, but pure criminality and banditry. The killings going on presently in the South East must stop.”
Ibem urged Soludo not to be deterred by the antics of sponsors of security challenges in the South East, but to double his effort at securing Kanu’s release.