The pan-Igbo socio-cultural organisation, the Ohanaeze Ndigbo, yesterday said it would convene a meeting of Igbo leaders following the recent massacre of 22 people from Egedegede, Obeagu and Nkaleha communities of Ebonyi State and some parts of Enugu State between Sunday and Monday nights, by Fulani herdsmen.
According to a statement signed by the Chairman, Council of Elders, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, the elders of Igboland have directed that the President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Prof. George Obiozor and the Chairman of South-East Governors’ Forum, Governor David Umahi of Ebonyi State, should call an immediate meeting of stakeholders, including the National Assembly.
“This meeting will deliberate on ways and means to protect Igbo people wherever they live. The meeting will also establish an emergency relief fund from where help can be given to people exposed to attack of terrorism anywhere in Igboland. We wish to say with pride that all through the history of Nigeria, Igbo are known to live in many places outside Igboland and they have never launched any attack against the lives and property of the people of that area.”
It added: “In Igbo culture of ‘Onye-aghala-nwanne-ya’, I want to make it clear to all and sundry that any attack on any Igbo soil is an attack on the entire Igboland. Igbo will never fold their hands and watch people invade them. I am constrained to sound this warning as the Chairman of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Council of Elders that we will no longer accept a situation where our people are invaded by terrorists.
“We will take every step to defend the lives and property of our people. We had earlier expressed our sympathy to our compatriots in other states in Nigeria such as Borno, Kaduna, Yobe, Sokoto, Taraba, Benue and Plateau where people have suffered similar invasion in the past.”