Governors from the South East region of the country on Saturday, knocked secessionist groups and their activities in the zone as well as other parts of the country.
The governors stated this when they met in Enugu in a unanimous decision irrespective of their political affiliation as a way to tackle the insecurity that is bedevilling the region.
The governors also stayed clear from the agitations of such groups and frowned on the violence that ensued which led to the loss of lives and destruction of properties.
Ebonyi State Governor, who is also the
Chairman of the Forum, Dave Umahi said at the end of the meeting, “We condemn in totality, the activities of violent secessionist groups in the South East and elsewhere; we firmly proclaim that we do not support them, they do not speak for South East.”
He added, “The impression that South East leaders are silent over some of our youths’ agitations for secession is not correct.
“South East Governors, Ohanaeze President, National Assembly members, notable leaders had come out publicly many times in the past to speak against such agitations. In order not to mismanage the unfortunate situation, South East leaders have set up a committee to engage such youths to stop and allow elders speak to address such fears.”
The governors also pledged their allegiance to one united Nigeria, but however, observe that threats have been made against the people from the south east region.
The forum noted that it would, notwithstanding ensure protection for everyone in the south east and other regions.
They appealed to leaders from other regions to ensure the protection of the igbos in their regions or states.
The forum also condemned the killing of security agencies, burning of strategic infrastructure, and killing of civilians in the South East and other regions.
They appealed to the security agencies to discharge their duties within the rules of engagement and the law, as well as urged the members of the National Assembly from the South East to support the creation of state police in the ongoing constitutional amendment.
“We, the Igbos do reaffirm our commitment to one united Nigeria under a platform of justice, equity of rights, fairness, love, and respect for one another.
“The meeting endorsed our South East joint security outfit – Ebubeagu and asked them to work with security agencies and to respect the rights and privileges of all those living in South East and our visitors,” Governor Umahi said while reading the communique issued at the end of the meeting.
Also at the meeting were the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige; Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Uche Ogah; and former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Pius Anyim, as well as religious and traditional leaders, among others.