Open Letter To Southeast Governors & Federal Legislators
Open Letter To Southeast Governors & Federal Legislators
• Mr. William M. Obiano Executive Governor of Anambra State
• Okezie Victor Ikpeazu, PhD Executive Governor of Abia State
• Mr. Rochas Anayo Okorocha Executive Governor of Imo State
• Mr. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi Executive Governor of Enugu State
• Engineer Dave Umahi Executive Governor of Ebonyi State
• Barr Ike Ekweremadu Deputy Senate President of Nigeria
• Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe Chairman of the Southeast Senate Caucus
• Mr. Chukwuka Onyema Chairman of the House of Reps Southeast Caucus
• Fifteen Members of the Southeast Caucus in the Senate
• Forty-three Members of the House of Reps Southeast Caucus
Appointment Of Next Igbo IGP And Public Declaration On The Position Of Igbo Nation In The 2019 Gen Elections, Etc Mandatory For Determination Of Your Political Present & Future In Igbo Land
(Onitsha, Southeast Nigeria: 16th December 2018)-The Southeast Based Coalition of Human Rights & Democracy Organizations (SBCHROs) had in its meeting with other stakeholders in Onitsha on 8th and 9th December 2018 critically analyzed the unfolding developments in the country in general and Southeast or Igbo Nation in particular. Key among issues looked into was the position of Igbo Nation in the present political dispensation including the composition of the country’s political and security establishments. The role of Igbo or Southeast public office holders particularly the Governors and the federal legislators from the Region was also looked into and critically examined.
From robust contributions made by leaders of the coalition and others invited from various fields of socio-political groupings, it was discovered and concluded that all is not well with the Igbo Nation and their people in the present political dispensation and security arrangements in Nigeria. Apart from robust contributions made in the meeting by thinkable CSO leaders present and other invited expert-activists, the coalition strikingly received and studied the latest Special Report of Intersociety on Military Massacre Operations in Eastern Nigeria and their Economic Costs.
The 81-page Report not only presented a detailed chronology of the massacre with casualty and injured figures; dates, time, locations and names of the perpetrators; but also contained the lists of present Commissioners of Police, Directors of SSS and Commanders of military formations in the Southeast Region or Igbo Land. In the said lists, 99% of the Commissioners of Police in the Southeast and Delta State are Northern Muslim officers with only exception being Abia State where retiring CP Chris Okey Ezike was recently posted as Commissioner of Police, Abia State Police Command.
In the area of State Directors of SSS posted to the Southeast Region and Delta State, four are from the North, one from Southwest and one (Delta) is Igbo daughter married in Edo State. In the area of Commanders of military formations in the Southeast Region including those manning the 82 Division and its sub formations as well as Onitsha/Ogbaru and Abia Naval Posts, none is commanded by an Igbo officer. They are 95% Northern control while the remaining 5% are in control of other non Igbo senior military officers.
In another recent detailed investigation conducted by Intersociety into the composition of the command or senior police officers’ list, Intersociety made a shocking discovery that senior police officers of the Igbo background are quietly and unceremoniously being weeded out of the NPF into retirement without commensurate promotions and postings to fill the gaps or vacancies unjustly created. Dozens of Igbo or Southeast senior police officers have left the Force in droves between 2016 and 2018 due to long years in one rank without statutory promotions and timely promotion of others to fill the gaps or vacancies unjustly.
For instance, Intersociety had finds that serving CPs Chris Okey Ezike and Damian Agba Chukwu will be leaving the Force on 31st April and 19th March 2019 respectively, while AIG Godwin C. Nwobodo is due to be retired on 12th August 2019. Intersociety also cited the case of retiring CP Ezike and now retired DIG Peter Yisa Gana (Niger State) to buttress its point of how Igbo senior police officers are maltreated in the NPF. While both joined the NPF same day on 31st December 1984, DIG Peter Gana was promoted to DIG on 21st February 2012 while CP Chris got promoted as “Deputy Commissioner of Police” on 1st August 2012.
By the investigative account of Intersociety, too, those Igbo senior police officers who retired in droves as “ACP or DCP or CP” between 2016 and 2018 included Paul C. Okafor (Anambra-retired 1st April 2017), Nwodibo Ekechukwu (Imo-retired 19th February 2017), Ogbusua Aja Oleh (Abia-retired on 26th May 2016), Emmanuel C. Ojukwu (Anambra-retired on 28th October 2016), Chidi Nwulu (Abia-retired on 1st August 2016), Augustine Ezechukwu (Enugu-retired on 1st September 2017) and Anthony Otumbadi Okafor (Imo-retired on 24th July 2016).
Others are Onyeagoro Ebere Chijioke (Imo-retires on 1st January 2019), Uzodimma Chi Anaekwe (Anambra-retired on 1st August 2016), Innocent Chibuike Okeanonife (Enugu-retired on 1st August 2016), Umege Uzochukwu (Imo-retires on 1st January 2019), Lawrence Onwuka (Anambra-retired on 1st August 2016), Damian Nkem Okoro (Imo-retires on 2nd April 2019), Emmanuel Ngwu (Enugu-1st September 2016), Davidson O. Madu (Enugu-retires on 17th April 2019), Sylvester Chinedum (Anambra-retired on 1st August 2016), Raymond Chukwu Anyanwu (Imo-retired on 1st August 2016), Charles Uchechukwu Ezeala (Imo-retired on 1st September 2016), Emeka Nwakor-Osaji (Anambra-retired on 22nd November 2018) and Chukwuma C. Katchy (Anambra-retired on 10th November 2016).
The coalition also studied and found the role of the Southeast Governors and federal legislators from the Region; in the present ordeal of the Region and its People to be utterly despicable and condemnable. Had the said political office holders risen to the occasion, their constitutional responsibilities and social contract obligations to the People of the Region; these segregation, exclusion, persecution and militarization of the Region and associated killings, maiming and property loss or destruction would not have been possible.
Intersociety had also in its research findings and special report; found that “N12b was donated by the Southeast Governors to fund the military massacre operations in the Region between August 2015 and September 2017 and its aftermath covering past 40 months or August 2015 to December 2018”. The staggering sum was donated to all federal security formations in the Region from the so called monthly “security votes of the Governors”, on average of N60m monthly by each of the five Southeast Governors.
In the clear and unambiguous words of Intersociety, “the Southeast Governors further demonstrated unwillingness and inability to stop the massacre in their capacities as “Chief Security and Executive Officers” of their States. Governors William Obiano and Victor Okezie Ikpeazu of Anambra and Abia States were particularly and directly involved by planning, organizing and funding the massacre operations in their States. Throughout the massacre operations till date, the Southeast Governors have kept a sealed lip and refused to speak or rise in condemnation or do anything or rehabilitate the victims of the massacre and their families. They watched by and said nothing when soldiers and police SARS operatives invaded hospitals where the shot and wounded were admitted for treatments and abducted them to unknown locations”.
“The Southeast Governors also colluded with President Muhammadu Buhari and his office in unleashing military and police siege on the Region leading to disruption of economic activities and endangering of lives of the citizens of the Region. The rapacious militarization of the Southeast Region was done without putting into consideration the collective security, safety and welfare of the People of the Region. It was done in disguise to flood the Region with violent Fulani marauders and other violent citizens; thereby making the Region a “conquered territory” or a “Region under conquest or siege by an army of occupation”.
“By granting blanket and cowardly approval to militarization of the Southeast Region including Army Python Dance exercises without resistance and rising in strong opposition to the imbalanced ethno-religious composition of those manning the commanding positions and rank and file of the military and police formations in the Region, the Governors of the Southeast have traded and sold off the security and safety of the Region”, Intersociety concluded.
For too long the Southeast Region and its general population have endured these despicable conducts and activities of their so called “political leaders and public office holders”. As Intersociety has summed it all, the deciding moment is here! The Southeast Governors and federal legislators named above must speak out, rise to the occasion or stand permanently condemned and rejected by their People. The Region cannot no longer pretend to have leaders and political representatives when there are none or where the collective security and welfare of the Region are in jeopardy or jeopardized by those who claimed to be leading or representing them.
The analytical findings of the coalition have been reduced to three major issues or tasks before the Southeast Governors and the federal legislators named above: (1) issue of appointment of next Igbo IGP, (2) issue of secret or alleged adoption by Southeast Governors and principal federal legislators from the Region of Mr. Muhammadu Buhari for the 2019 Presidential Election and their commitment and participation in the “project” without the knowledge or consent of the Southeast People and the Region; and (3) issue of Igbo agenda and conditions under which the Southeast Governors and the said principal federal legislators secretly or allegedly adopted Mr. Buhari or a person in his name for the 2019 Presidential Poll.