DAVID-CHYDDY ELEKE, Awka
Following the recent clash between members of the pro-Biafran Group and Nigerian Navy personnel in Onitsha, Anambra State, where seven people were feared dead and 38 injured, the pan-Igbo group, Ohaneze Ndigbo Youth Wing yesterday gave the Federal Government a 14-day ultimatum to fish out and prosecute perpetrators of the crime.
Ohaneze Ndigbo, in a two-paged press statement signed by the state Deputy Youth Leader and Director of Operations of the group, Comrade Ifeanyichukwu Chigbo and issued to journalists in Onitsha, recalled that two members of MASSOB were last week killed on Ugwuta road in Onitsha before the Sunday clash, which according to him, claimed seven lives and left scores injured.
The statement reads in part: “While we condemn the act of using sophisticated weapon against our youths, we are calling on both the federal and state governments to unravel the circumstances that led to the killing and prosecute the trigger-happy naval officers accordingly. Security agencies should use their arms according to the law.
“We did not take reprisal attack on the naval officers because our governor, who we hold at high esteem, is not in town.
“We have not forgotten the Apo and Ezu killings where our youths were wasted and nothing happened and that is why we are giving 14 days for necessary action to be taken. Enough is enough and Mr. President should warn the security agencies and call them to order against using sophisticated weapons against civilians. Let them not push us to the wall,” he warned.
Reacting however, the Senior Special Assistant to the state Governor on Youth Moblisation, Hon. Tony-Uche Ezekwelu, condemned the act but called on the youths to remain calm until Governor Willie Obiano, who he said is out of the state comes back to handle the matter.
“The governor is out of the country now for official engagement but the official position of the government on the matter will be made known as soon as he comes back. Anambra youths are peace loving and not vandals and criminals,” he said.
He consoled the families of those who lost their loved ones in the clash and prayed for the repose of the souls of the people who died in the clash, even as he prayed for the speedy recovery of those that are still in the hospital.