- The Pan-Niger Delta Forum criticised Arewa youths for issuing quit notice to Igbos
- The group said the youths should be arrested and prosecuted
- It however insisted that it does not support the break-up of Nigeria
The Pan-Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF) has reacted to the quit notice issued by Arewa youths to Igbo living in the north, describing it as a treasonable offence.
In a statement signed by a member of the central working committee, Dr. Alfred Mulade, PANDEF said the statement of the youths was more treasonable than the charges levied against Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of the Indigenous People Of Biafra (IPOB) and that serious action should be taken by security operatives.
The group insisted that although it wasn’t in support of the break-up of the country or Kanu’s agitation, it considers the threat issued by the northern youths a serious crime.
“We insist that this call by Arewa youths must be nipped in the bud, and the Federal Government should, as in the case of Nnamdi Kanu, arrest, detain and prosecute them for treasonable felony, with immediate effect. In this matter of threat to the corporate existence of Nigeria, there must be no sacred cows.
“PANDEF considers this statement by the Arewa Youths as tragic as and more treasonable than the offence allegedly committed by Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of IPOB, for which he was held in detention for about a year.
“Not only is this statement a potent threat to the corporate unity of the country, but in our view, appears the most dangerous statement ever made by any group to the unity and existence of Nigeria since the end of the civil war.”
“We must not forget how we came into the civil war that lasted for 30 months, and the avoidable calamities it wrought on our country. 50 years thereafter now, things have changed a great deal. Loyalties and commitments should be total of all Nigerians to a Nigeria where all Nigerians are free to stay in any part of the country, free from any form of molestation and discrimination, a Nigeria where we are all each other’s brother’s keeper, in a Nigeria where no one is superior to the other, and where no one threatens to drive any other group of Nigerians away from any part of the country.
“This statement by the Arewa Youths which strikes at the very roots of the Nigeria we believe in, is, indeed, an attempt to divide and breakup the country, whose unity is guaranteed by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“Whilst we do not support Nnamdi Kanu, and the various secessionist organizations in the South-East, for reviving the call for Biafra; and whilst we have to restate that the South- South is not part of the said Biafra, we take the view that this regrettably dangerous statement by the northern youths, is unwittingly lending profound support to the demands of the Biafran agitators, which is totally unacceptable to any patriotic Nigerian, and a flagrant violation of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“We recall the Statement we made as PANDEF a few days ago, concerning the Biafra sit-at-home call, and widely reported in the media to the effect that the success recorded by the Biafra sit-at-home call, as reported by various news media, is a clear indication that all is not well in our Country… Biafra is born out of a deep-seated and agonizing feeling of marginalization and discrimination.
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“So, as has been advised, let us listen to the Ibos and the Biafra agitators. We listen to them knowing that there is no harm in discussing the unity of Nigeria; we listen to them with the clear understanding that Nigeria is better off united and that disintegration is not in anyone’s interest.”
“We stand by this patriotic statement. We will be moving into a state of anarchy and disintegration, if the unfortunate and misguided statement by the Arewa Youths is not withdrawn, and Federal Government does not take action by apprehending and prosecuting these youth and their sponsors.”
Watch a Legit.ng TV video below of a retired major general comparing the Biafra agitation to the Niger Delta issue