The ADF Council Meeting was summoned to review the ongoing programs of the Foundation as well as the Security challenges facing Alaigbo and their larger Federal Republic of Nigeria.
The ADF Council expresses her deep appreciation of the leadership performance of her leaders, especially those who have stood firmly and made enough sacrifices in order to uphold and pursue the fulfillment of the Mission of ADF.
The Council notes with satisfaction the inspiring progress and the bold, fearless initiatives and activities embarked upon with little, indeed very meager material resources. Among these is the successful Relocation of the ADF Secretariat from Abuja to Enugu the Capital of Alaigbo. The Council described this as indeed a great milestone in the history of ADF.
The Council reviewed the progress made in the detailed report on the Akuruo Ulo (Invest-At-Home) Movement and also noted with deep satisfaction the progress made so far within a the short period of her existence in inspiring and working with Igbo business men to revive the vibrancy of the economic life of the region as it was in the days of Zik and Okpara era.
The series of grave acts of frustration of Igbo business initiatives as well as the measures which are systematically being applied by authorities of the Federal Government to destroy the foundations of the economic life of the region.
The Council maintains her position that the resultant alarming rate of poverty and hunger in the region can be effectively tackled if Ndigbo refocus their entrepreneurial spirit and drive towards developing Alaigbo. Besides, the Council, noted that over 400% or Igbo investment is in other parts of Nigeria. And incidentally, such investments have remained very vulnerable as a result of hostility from the Federal and other local agents,
The desperate bid of the Fulani forces to overrun and take over the entire territory of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is at the heart of the current grave insecurity crises in all parts of the Federation, particularly in Alaigbo.
It is in the light of the above that the ADF Council notes with immense sense of fulfillment the latest phase of the Akuruo Ulo Movement which focuses on Food Security. Youth empowerment and land security in Alaigbo. The Council therefore calls on Ndigbo to embrace the Akuruo Ulo Cooperative Movement (ACM) as a necessary step in ensuring that Alaigbo becomes a Self-Reliant as well as a Secure Nation.
The Council therefore calls in Igbo Youths to remain self-confident on the future of the Igbo nation, to remain patriotic to the Igbo Cause, but to avoid all forms of anarchism which may endanger the future of Alaigbo,
On the SIT-AT-HOME declared by the organization of the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB)
On the Sit-At-Home declared by the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra, IPOB, we wish to state for the attention of our Fellow compatriots, that ADF has always supported the principle of Sit-At-Home for the entire Igbo nation. However, this is for MAY 30TH every Year in remembrance of the Biafra War of 1967-70. But for ADF, that is only to observe it as a day of deep and sober reflection over the most tragic and darkest period in our history, namely, the 1967-70 Biafra war. That war, as we know, unleashed an unimaginable holocaust upon our people which led to the death of over 3 million men, women and children as well as caused vast destruction of our economy and social infrastructure.
The essence of such historical reflection is to enable our people to draw the necessary lessons from that experience to enable us be stronger in meeting similar challenges, such as the present one, without making the mistakes of the previous war.
Therefore, such a historical moment should not be trivialized.
If the IPOB leadership had urged their members to observe that day and appealed to other Igbo citizens to join them, that would have made a lot of sense. The way they are doing it may lead to loss of credibility among our people.
Having said all these, ADF continues to condemn the trial of Nnadi Kalu because it is selective justice, when the Myetti Allah and Boko Haram are waging war of genocide against our people and all the indigenous peoples in the Federal Republic of Nigeria, while the Federal Government is simply pampering them and integrating them in the Federal armed forces.
Finally, ADF calls on the various segments of our nation to remain focused and united, and what is more, we must co-operate with all other nationalities struggling to defeat the Conquest Agenda of the Fulani. Ndigbo should stop the simmering state of Anarchy in Alaigbo that could leave us easy prey in the hands of the enemy.
PROF T. UZODINMA NWALA BISHOP UDEZUE ONUBOGU
ADF PRESIDENT CHAIRMAN, ADF BOT
HON ABIA ONYIKE
CHAIRMAN, ADF BUREAU OF PUBLICITY
THE OWERRI DECLARATION
COMMUNIQUE OF THE
2019 IGBO NATIONAL SUMMIT
PEACE, SECURITY AND DEVELOPMENT OF
ALAIGBO AND HER NEIGHBOURS.
Held at Villa Gardens Hotel, Owerri , Imo State, Nigeria.
The first-ever IGBO NATIONAL SUMMIT was convened today, August 22nd
2019 by key frontline Igbo organizations and major stakeholders with representatives of her Neighbors in attendance to examine the grave state of insecurity in our region, under the banner Peace, Security and Development of Alaigbo and Her Neighbors. The event was presided over by His Royal Majesty, Igwe Amb. Lawrence Agubuzu, Chairman, Enugu State Council of Traditional Rulers. He was assisted by His Lordship, Bishop Obi Udezue Onubogu, Overseer, Rock Cathedral, Enugu.
After an exhaustive of key nte addresses by the conveners as well major presentations on the state and challenges of insecurity that have gravely affected the peace and development of Alaigbo and her neighbors, the participants noted as follows –
i. That the Territory known as the Federal Republic of Nigeria was initially created by the British colonial authority mainly to advance her colonial interests.
ii. That since the amalgamation of the territory consisting of several major and smaller nationalities in 1914, the region has known no stability, but rather has witnessed incessant crises resulting in the Biafra war of 1967. That war saw the worst state of pogrom in which over 3 million people mainly Igbo citizens were brutally killed and the territory devastated. That the end of the war left Alaigbo and her neighbors in ruins with no efforts since then to rebuild the region.
iii. That the endemic instability in the Federation has been due to an inherent incompatibility of values between the dominant religions, traditions and cultures of its indigenous ethnic nationalities. But this has been made worse by the deliberate act of manipulation by the British colonial authorities who, through manipulation of the Federal structure and census, left power in the hands of the Fulani minority.
iiii. What is more, political stability is anchored on the fundamental principles of democracy, rule of law and equity. Unfortunately, the Fulani minority does not understand, let alone believe in these basic norms of co-existence among peoples. This truth has been brazenly asserted by the Fulani National Movement (FUNAM) when, in a recent statement in which they declared their resolve to fully conquer the rest of the Federation, FUNAM referred to what it called “irresponsible Western notion of democracy”, which it said the British imposed in Nigeria in order to undermine their territorial ambition.
v. The participants noted that the Federal Republic of Nigeria as it exists today is a phantom political state which has lost all the basic principles of rule of law, justice, equity and humane values; anarchy now prevails in all spheres of the society.
vi. The Republic has been seized by one ethnic nationality, namely, the minority Fulani who do not hide their intentions to wipe out the indigenous populations and their religions and turn the territory into an Islamic State.as has been arrogantly stated by the Fulani Nationality Movement (FUNAM). Following the mass killings of the helpless citizens of Plateau by the Fulani, where some non-Fulani civilians according to FUNAM ‘were justifiable hacked down’. In their statement following this gruesome massacre, FUNAM declared: –
We have said it over and over, that Nigeria is the only inheritance we have in Africa and anywhere in the world. This land belongs to us, from Sokoto to the banks of the Atlantic Ocean. This was the destiny bestowed on Uthman Dan Fodio which would have been fulfilled since 1816 if not for the obstruction of this great assignment by the British. It is no longer time to play the ostrich. Our men are waiting. We are eager to fight. We are boiling with the zeal to actualize our dream; enough of double dealing and ambivalence by FULANI political leaders who unfortunately think the FULANI can only take back what belongs to us through appeasement and elections destined to reflect cultural values antithetical to the preaching of Uthman Dan Fodio.
vii. Indeed, this declaration is no longer a statement of intentions. The Fulani have fully embarked on their fulfillment. In pursuit of this goal, they have systematically, under their leader General Mohammadu Buhari, seized all the apparatuses of the state – the Executive, the Legislative, the Judiciary, the Military and all the Security Forces, the Bureaucracy, the Economy, all machinery of Government including the so-called Independent Electoral Commission, (INEC), the Educational Institutions, all parastatals of the state.
viii. The participants noted that as of today, the following is the composition of the key Executive, Legislative. Judiciary, Administrative and Security organs of the Federal Republic of Nigeria:-
• President of the Federal Republic …North
• Senate President …North
• Chief Justice of Nigeria…..…North
• President Court of Appeal …North
• CJ Federal High Court ……North
• Inspector-General of Police (IG) North
• DG of Department of State Security ……North
• DG NIA ………North
• CG NSCDC……North
• Minister of Defense ……North
• Nat. Intelligence AgencyNorth
• Minister Finance ……North
• Minister Petroleum ……North
• Minister of Aviation ……North
• Chief of Air Staff ……North
• Chief of Army Staff ….…North
• CG Customs ……North
• CG Immigration ……North
• CG Prisons ….…North
• GMD NNPC ……North
• Chairman Code of conduct Bureau North
• Chairman CCT ……North
• Chairman EFCC ……North
• Director of NFIU ……North
• Chairman INEC ……North
• Population Chairman ……North
• DG/CEO Nat’l Identity ……North, etc, etc.
All these Officials are not only Northerners, but 95% Fulani Muslims.
ixThe participants recalled the catalogue of pogroms and genocide serially inflicted on Ndigbo and the Peoples of Eastern Nigeria which have long threatened our collective survival and existential reality as a People in their economic sojourn across the Country and their violent displacement from their places of abode denying them a sense of belonging in the polity in the face of Government acquiescence and non-payment of compensation as outlined below, the consequent decimation of our growth as a People and our Youth and future generations and our treatment as a conquered People by successive Governments:
* Katsina Railway riot 1937.
*Jos Northern Nigeria 1945. *Northern Nigeria 1953.
*1966 Pogroms Northern Nigeria
*Biafran War 1967-70
*May 1967 Northern Nigeria
*Beheading of Gideon *Akaluka Kano 1995
Christmas eve riot
*Madalla Christmas day bombing 2011Kano
*Post-April 2011 Presidential Election: 10 Youth-Corpers & several Citizens murdered because a Christian Southerner was elected President against a Moslem Northerner.
Nimbo, Enugu massacre 2016
*Awgu Enugu in 2016
*Aba & Afara Ukwu 2017 Operation Python Dance, and the list goes on …………
ix. Given the daunting and unabated militarization of our Homeland by extortionist Police and Military Agents of State, the senseless and conscienceless killing of our Clergy, the condescending sacking of our Churches, Villages and Rural Communities, the routine rape of our Women, Mothers Wives and Daughters, the willful destruction of farmlands and humiliating desecration of our sacred Traditional Grooves, Shrines and Deities by ravaging Terrorist Fulani Headsmen, the immolate destruction of our lives and property, and the wanton implementation of the obnoxious RUGA policy despite widespread Citizen resistance,.
In the light of the above, the participants resolved as follows:-
i. Against this background of worrisome escalating insecurity, fear and horror in our Homeland, threats to our continued existence as a people more so in the face of mounting pressure of occupation by alien terrorist Muslim Fulani Herdsmen, we hereby declare that our people are no longer willing to live a life of meaningless existence in the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
ii. And, therefore, we urge for a renegotiation of the basis of our co-existence with our Neighbors. We do not wish to live in the Federal Republic of Nigeria as slaves but desire to co-exist with other regions if Alaigbo (and her willing neighbors) are recognized as AUTONOMOUS REGION, with the right to full control of our territory, our resources, our Executive, legislative, Diplomatic and Administrative institutions, as well as our judiciary, economic and social resources. etc.
iii. Consequently, we are compelled to call for a plebiscite to secure our God-given Homeland, propelled by our collective will to self-determination, to embrace a sustainable future of peace, Security and development for Ourselves and our Children yet unborn.
iiii. Wherein we urge all Pan-Igbo Organizations, including the Alaigbo Development Foundation (ADF), Association of South-East Town Unions (ASETU), World Igbo Congress (WIC). concerned Christian Clergy and Representative Organizations, particularly the Christian Association of Nigeria South-East (CAN-SE), from our contiguous Neighbors including the Coalition of all Pro-Biafra Groups, and the vindictively proscribed non-violent Organization, IPOB, to collectively work in political synergy for our collective aspiration for self-determination, to ensure our survival and lead the pursuit of the realization of our collective security, destiny and development as a free, prosperous peace loving People bound together by the principles of Self-determination and freedom
v. We call for a formal coalition of people-based organizations – ADF, ASETU, CAN-SE, WIC, Traditional Rulers Councils, Prof-Biafra Groups (IPOB in particular),Trade Union organizations, Human Research Organizations, Media organizations, Women organizations, Youth and Students Organizations, other religious groups, ex-Service men, to remain together and continue working for the benefit of our people,
vi. We urge for unity of purpose and regular consultations and collaboration between these bodies and the Governments of our region including the socio-cultural organization in Alaigbo, the Ohanaeze Ndigbo
vii. We finally urge the Governors and States House of Assembly to take immediate steps to pass the Anti-Open Grazing Law for the control of the movement of Cattle and other animals in order to protect our farmers and avert the imminent starvation knocking at our doors as farmers are afraid to go to their farms because of the incessant brutal attacks and killings as well as rape of their women and daughters by the Fulani terrorist Herdsmen.
viii. The Governors of the South-Eat should be reminded that they do not need the approval of the President to ban the movement of cattle by foot in the South-East. Even in the absence of Anti-Open Grazing Law, the people and government of Alaigbo can draw their authority to ban the free movement of cattle in the region either from the traditional Igbo customary law or the 2nd Schedule (Concurrent List) of the existing Constitution, particularly items 18 and 20, and the Fourth Schedule (Functions of LGC) items 1 and 2,
ix. We call on the State Governments and the various Communities to ensure that Community vigilantes are effectively in place, All patriotic citizens should support the Government and the vigilantes with adequate funds and protective gargets.
x. We call on our youths and all Pan-Igbo and Pro-Biafra organizations to mobilize their members to enforce security in their various communities.
xi. We urge our women to remember that they were responsible for hastening the demise of colonial rule whose citadel they assaulted in 1929, the first such incident in the history of global colonialism,
xii. We urge the authorities of the Federal Government of Nigeria to lift the siege on our territory by withdrawing all the invading forces and dismantling all extortionist checkpoints
xiii. Finally, we urge all Governors in Alaigbo, Senators, Hose of Reps, and Speakers of the House of Assembly to please consider matters in this communique as expedient and dealt with urgently.
xiiii. Whereupon we call on Almighty God to strengthen our Resolve on this day being Thursday 22nd August 2019 at Owerri. Imo State, Nigeria
LIST OF SIGNATORIES AND ORGANIZATIONS.
1. PROF T UZODINMA NWALA
ALAIGBO DEVELOPMENT FOUNDATION (ADF)
2. PROF UKACHUKWU AWUZIE
CHAIRMAN, ORGANIZING COMMITTEE
3. CHIEF EMEKA DIWE
ASSOCIATION OF SOUTH-EAST TOWN UNIONS (ASETU)
4. BISHOP GODDY OKAFOR
CHRISTIAN ASSOCIATION OF NIGERIA (CAN-SE)
5. BAR ADA EGBUFOR
WORLD IGBO CONGRESS (WIC)
6. PROF, ELOCHUKWU AMUCHEAZI
IGBO LEADERS OF THOUGHT (ILT)
7. BAR EMEKA UMEAGBALASI
INTER-SOCIETY FOR CIVIL LIBERTIES & RULE OF LAW
8. MRS MARIA OKWO
IGBO WOMEN ASSEMBLY (IWA)
9. BAR ALLOY EJIMAKOR
ATTORNEY TO THE PRO-BIAFRA ORG.
10. OKEY ORJI
COALITION OF PRO-BIAFRA ORGS.
11. BAR CASMIR NWAFOR Rtd. Captain
EX-SERVICE MEN OF NIGERIA
12. PROF N P. OKOLI
OFOR BUIKE INTELLECTUAL UNION BENIN CITY
13. CHIEF SAM AWUIAKA
IGBO COMMUNITY UNION EDO STATE
14. SIR CHUKS OGBONNA
IMO COMMUNITY EUROPE
15. MS CHINWE EBOH
IGBO GLIBAL AALIANCE AUSTRALIA
16. ASUZU CHINEDU PETERS
BVI CHANNEL 1
17. ANAENUGWU NDUBISI VINCENT
PEOPLES RESTORATION MOVEMENT
18. MR BENEDICT OKORO
OCHIE IGBO CULTURAL FOUNDATION
19. PROF NATH ANIEKWU
20. DR. ONYI GBUJIE
21. HON, GIDEON ADIKWURU
22. CHIEF MONDAY IKOKU
ON THE THANK YOU LETTER TO THE IMO STATE GOVERNOR!
On May 14th 2020, a Press Statement was issued by the Government of Imo State to the effect that the Governor, Hope Uzodinma had settled the claims of the Fulani herders who invaded some communities in Ezinihitte LGA in April, 2020. The Press Statement was signed by the Chief Press Secretary/Media Adviser to the Governor of Imo State, Mr Oguwike Nwachukwu. The photograph of the Governor and that of the head of the Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN), taken during the occasion, was published alongside the statement.
On the same day, May 14th 2020, the Chairman of the Interim Management Committee of Ezinihitte LGA., Chief Sir F. S. Onyeberechi went on air (Darling FM 107.3) to confirm the payment and went further to issue a Press Statement signed by himself confirming the payment to the Fulani herders by the Government of Governor Hope Uzodinma. That Press Statement was profuse in eulogizing the Governor’s magnanimity.
Dramatically on the same day, another Press Statement was issued by the same Chief Press Secretary/Media Adviser to the Governor of Imo State, Mr Oguwike Nwachukwu stating that no payment was made to the Fulani herdsmen by the Governor.
Indeed, people became justifiably embarrassed, confused and were asking what is happening over this Double-speak or Double-talk from the Government.
It does appear to me that this embarrassment was caused, perhaps, on purpose, by the Governor’s men at the State House including the Chairman of the Ezinihitte Interim Management Committee. It has nothing to do with Ezinihitte people.
The whole incident arising from the trespass of the Fulani herders into Ezinihitte Local Government Area was indeed badly handled from the very beginning and needed a great circumspection in its remedy. When the Governor decided to make the payment for whatever political expediency there was, it should have been done with some sense of statecraft!
The Governor would have called all the parties to the State House to hear from the two parties since he had already been involved. He should have talked straight to them and sued for peace. He should have used his Executive Authority to caution the Fulani herders for their trespass and for violating –
i. the LOCKDOWN ORDERS of his Government
ii. the Customs of the people of Ezinihitte that prohibit Open Grazing in their area, and the
iii. Imo State Law No. 9 of 2006 which prohibits Open Grazing in Imo State.
Whatever else, including compensation to both parties—the Fulani Herders for their alleged lost cows, and the Ezinihitte Farmers for their crops which the cows may have damaged in the course of their illegal roaming, all these would have been done without so much GUSTO!
The resort to Media Hype of the incident was absolutely counter-productive and may have led to the embarrassing and unnecessary double-speak on the part the Government.
All these have little to do with the stance of Ezinihitte people.
Ezinihitte People – What Is Our Own?
The Cows have been paid for. We have nothing to do with the mishandling of the matter neither from the Public Relations aspect nor from the Purely Political aspect; all those are the headache of the Imo State Government and its Advisers.
For Ezinihitte, the Cows have been paid for. That headache has been removed from our people. There is therefore, every good sense in our thanking the Governor for it. That is the exactly what we have done in the LETTER OF APPRECIATION addressed to the Governor.
As for the crops destroyed, I am one of those that advised that we should not pursue the matter. Why did I do that?
My dear people, it is because the issue of the missing cows is becoming dangerously DIVERSIONARY. My People, don’t you see the danger in the whole episode—OUR SECURITY? That is the signal—the Fulani herders were not just grazing and passing by. They came to stay! Their target is the Imo River Basin Area that includes Ezinihitte. What happens if they do?
We would lose our Ancestral Land and Farms; our People would become the victims of kidnapping and murder; our wives and daughters, victims of rape and murder that will accompany that! The herders will easily legitimize their takeover of our ancestral land, for they believe that there will always be hungry and unpatriotic Traditional Rulers and Politicians to sell our lands to them!
If all these happen in our life-time, our ancestors would curse us, our children (born and unborn) would spit on our graves, NDI EZINIHITTE NWEM, MBANU!
What Is to Be Done!
The People of Ezinihitte should now focus on the main challenges staring us in the face—namely how best to protect our farms and our ancestral land, our men and women from the invaders. We must focus on how best to apply our Customary Laws and rely on the enabling Anti-Open Grazing law 9 (2006) of Imo State to protect our farmlands as well as our lives, if we must learn from the experiences of other communities within and outside Alaigbo.
What lies ahead of the Ezinihitte People is now how best to ensure their security working in collaboration with dedicated Law-Enforcement agents in our area.
It is of course hoped that the Fulani herders have leant that Ezinihitte people do not have land for Open Grazing and are determined to protect their crops and their land to avoid famine and starvation of their citizens.
As for NDI OJI AKPA ELI OZU, na Ndi RATU RATU in our midst, please allow us to consolidate Aladinma Ezinihitte and other similar organizations in Mbaise for the sake of the SECURITY and DEVELOPMENT of Ezinihitte as well as the WELFARE of our people!
May God Bless Us All!
Your dear Brother,
PROF T. UZODINMA NWALA
COALITION OF PAN-IGBO CIVIL SOCIETY ORGANIZATIONS
TO IGBO LEADERS, GOVERNMENTS AND STAKEHOLDERS ON
THE SECURITY OF ALAIGBO!
We, the undersigned representing various interests and organizations in Alaigbo, on behalf of Our People And Our Land, send you this Distress Message!
A. Our Ancestral Homes are under siege! Our Lives are being wasted! Alaigbo has been invaded! We must rise up and defend our Homeland!!
The situation in Nigeria today is one of the worst security challenges in human history. For us in Alaigbo, the situation is more critical than the one we faced during the Biafra war.
There does not seem to be anyone in charge to whom the people can look up to for their protection or the Government in power is in collusion with the forces responsible for the state of generalized anarchy in the land.
The people must take full responsibility for the protection of themselves, their families and their property. Our land has been invaded!
We must stop mystifying the issue of security. When the enemy attacks us and our families; when he goes into our farm to destroy our crops, or forcefully enters our home s to seize the little foods we have for our children, should we just sit there and do nothing? Should we fold our hands, sit there until General Buhari or any Federal or State Authority comes to our rescue.
Indeed, the Security of any man is first and foremost his personal responsibility.
The role of Government on matters of security of the lives and property of the people is crucial but only second to the efforts of the individual citizen who are direct victims.
It is true that one of the major reasons for the establishment of Government by man is to ensure his security and that of his family.
However, this does not in any way remove the citizen’s personal responsibility in matters of his own personal security and that of his family.
There are layers of responsibility over the security of every man – from the family, kindred, village to the Clan, and, ipso facto, from the Local Government to the State, the entire country and indeed to the Global Community. Thus, every tier of society has a role to play in matters of security of lives and property of the people.
It is in this sense that we the undersigned maintain that – SECURITY IS THE JOINT RESPONSIBILITY OF THE PEOPLE AND THE GOVERNMENT.
In the light of these truths that we categorically declare that –
We, in the entire Igbo nation, should not mystify issues concerning the Security of our People and our Ancestral Communities!
That Right of Self-Defense is inalienable and therefore –
Every citizen has a duty and a right to carry defensive weapons for the protection of himself, his family and his property including his farmlands and ancestral homes.
The Government should recognize and hence legalize private ownership and possession of defensive weapons, particularly now there is a state of virtual anarchy in the land.
Anti-Open Grazing Law should be enacted by all the State Houses of Assembly in Alaigbo to enforce the protection of our farms and crops and prevent famine in our land.
Communities Vigilantes should be fully operational in all our communities, provided with legislative backing and thus provided with adequate system of weapon.
We fully support the idea of State Police, provided that such State Police is under the full control of respective zonal and State Governments.
B. We support the Bold Security Initiatives by our Neighbors in other parts of the Federation – the Yoruba, the Tiv, the Junkun, etc, to protect themselves and their Ancestral lands!
We, in the entire Igbo nation, should not mystify issues concerning the Security of our People and our Ancestral Communities! This is what the example of our neighbors teaches us. And we, therefore. fully support them.
Yes, there is no mystery in the Security Measures being taken by our neighbors – the Yoruba, the Tiv in Benue State, the Junkun in Taraba, the Edo People, etc, to protect themselves (their men, women and children) and their Ancestral lands.
What they have done is to exercise their fundamental right to Self-Defense, a right which we ourselves have been trying to exercise BUT now need to assert in a more positive and non-ambiguous terms.
The Yoruba nation first established the needed Security structures.
And now the various states within the Yoruba nation are enacting the relevant laws to back those security measures taken earlier.
With the later action, all ambiguities in the earlier steps they took have been taken care of and thus challenges to their right to exercise Self-Defense have been neutralized.
The Benue State first established the enabling laws for their security, and followed it up with needed structures and instruments to back the laws.
And no one can rationally, legally and politically challenge what they have done and are doing to protect their people and their land.
In all these, the People and their Governments have worked in tan dem! And therefore Ndigbo, we should learn from their examples.
Thus, from the experience of our Neighbor, it is imperative that Regional/State Governments (Governors and Houses of Assembly) need to do two basic things to secure our land and protect our people, namely –
Pass the enabling Security Law, particularly the Anti-Open Grazing Bill which have been submitted to them and
Set up and equip the necessary Security Structures including Community Vigilantes.
We also hereby call on all our various communities and citizens to support their local Vigilantes organizations with all that are needed to make them effectively functional.
C. To the State Governments in Alaigbo. Within the Igbo nation, we are aware of some measures being taken by some of our Governors with regard to our security. Apart from certain basic inadequacies, what those security initiatives lack is the backing of the popular will and support of our people. They also lack enabling laws to back them up.
We aware that a few of our State Legislatures have passed the Anti-Open Grazing Bill, awaiting signing by the Governors. We, therefore, urge the Governors to urgently do so if they have not already signed the bill into law. Other States are called upon to follow suite and enact the Anti-Open Grazing Bill.
D. Why the Anti-Open Grazing Bill?
i. Why is the unrestrained movement and open Grazing of Cattle an issue and core one for that matter which affects the Security of lives and property in the Federal Republic of Nigeria today.
Ii. Those who emphasize what they call herders-farmers clash as a major root-cause of the present bloody Security situation in Alaigbo and other parts of the Federation are right in a sense.
iii. The free roaming and grazing of cattle that lawlessly destroy the crops of helpless farmers is the major root cause of the problem.
iv. What is more, criminals from West African and other countries have taken advantage of this situation to invade our communities, wrecking all manner of havoc, killing, maiming and kidnapping our innocent citizens, rapping our wives and daughters with reckless abandon. And the Federal Government of Nigeria is hardly doing anything to protect the people.
v. The Nigerian President, General Mohammad Buhari, has himself publicly confessed that many of these criminals come from Libya. And so what?
vi. The most common identity of these criminals is that they hide under the movement of cattle. Therefore, the first step in tackling the Security challenges is to control the free movement and grazing of Cattle.
We are not saying that nobody should rear cattle. All we are saying is that open grazing of cattle is bad for our Security and bad for our economy and our survival.
Therefore, the law banning open grazing of cattle, goat and sheep must now be enacted for the above reasons.
E. What Is To Be Done And Done Urgently?
Urgent Igbo National Caucus To Assert Our Collective Resolve And Our Support For Our Governments To Enact The Anti-Open Grazing Law And Put In Place All Necessary Measures To Enforce The Law and ensure our Security!
We, the undersigned are calling for an URGENT IGBO NATIONAL CAUCUS involving the people and our Governments to give popular backing to the necessary adequate Security arrangements for our collective action.
What do we have on Ground?
We have our Ancestral Customary Laws which prohibit the roaming of GOATS, SHEEP, COWS, CATTLE, in our communities and farms.
We have Old Eastern Nigeria Law which prohibits the roaming of animals within the community. Such animals are teetered to avoid the destruction of farm lands if allowed to roam freely within the community.
In most of our ancestral communities, women organize themselves and provide schedules for various groups of women to operate on assigned days, to monitor, arrest offending animals and hand them over to community leaders. The owners of such animals must pay approved fines before they can reclaim their animals
All Governments in Alaigbo are called upon to Urgently enact the Anti-Open Grazing Law and provide all necessary measures to enforce the law and to ensure the security of lives and property in our Region!
Role Of Community Vigilante Groups.
Today, virtually all communities have their VIGILANTE (Local Security Watch) either operational or in limbo, Therefore, every community should be encouraged to set up and energize their Community Vigilante. State Houses of Assembly and Governors should quickly enact enabling Laws to back such measures. The State Governments and the various communities must provide the needed resources for their effective operation.
Finally, we declare that Security Is the joint Responsibility of the People and their Government!
To our all people, Ndigbo, we say unto you
“Beat your plowshares into swords, and your pruning hooks into spears; let the weak say, I am strong.” – Joel 3:10
Prof. Uzodinma Nwala Alaigbo Development Foundation (ADF).
Prof. Elochukwu Amuchazi Igbo Leaders of Thought (ILT)
Nze Fidelis Ozichukwu Igbon Town Unions (ITU)
His Grace Bar Chris Ede Christian Council of Nigeria, Enugu.rjt31z
Bishop Goddy Okafor Christian Council of Nigeria SE.
Mr Ngozi Odumuko Nzuko Umunna
Mr J. Ikunna Igbo Intelligentsia
Mr Tony Nnadi Lower Niger Congress (LNC)
Bar Emeka Umeagbalasi Inter-Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law
Bar Alloy Ejimakor Counsel for IPOB
Barr Max Ozoaka South-East Lawyers Forum
Engr Anthony Aniebue Peoples Restoration Movement (PRM)
Emeka Emekesiri MOBIN
Dr J. C. Chukuokolo South-East based Coalition of Human Rights and Democracy Organizations.(SBCHROS)
Ndubisi V. Anaenugwu BVI
Engr Ike Iwendu Assoc. of SE Presidents- General.
Mrs Maria Okwo Igbo Women Assembly (IWA)
Pastor Dr Okey Anoruo Assoc. of Imo Town Unions
Comr Uchenna Madu MASSOB
Mr Okey Orji Coalition of Pro-Biafra Organizations.
Ms Ola N. Uchendu Sons and Daughters of Alaigbo
Date February 17, 2020
ADF PRESS STATEMENT
The Community Policing Proposal of the South-East Governors and the Nigerian Police.
PART A. Two Meetings –
Joint Meeting of Ime-Obi and the SE Governors
Meeting of Ime-Obi Ohanaeze.
On the 9th of February, the Ime-Obi Ohanaeze met in Enugu on the current acute Security Challenges in Nigeria with particular reference to Alaigbo.
At the meeting, the President General of Ohanaeze , Chief Nnia Nwodo and Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu addressed Ime-Obi followed by speakers from all the States in Alaigbo including Rivers and Delta States.
The President of Alaigbo Development Foundation (ADF), Prof Uzodinma Nwala, presented to Ime-Obi, a document referred to as a DISTRESS CALL signed by over twenty pan-Igbo and civil society organizations.
After deliberations, Ime-Obi took two key decisions, namely –
To set up, as a matter of utmost urgency, a Special Security Committee to forge and drive an Igbo Security Agenda that would enable Ndigbo to protect the lives and property in their zone just as other zones are currently doing.
To set up, as a matter of utmost urgency, an Elders Council to sustain an interface with the Governors and Legislators in the zone.
Joint Meeting of Ime-Obi Ohanaeze and the SE Governors Forum.
On the same day, a team of the Igbo leadership who attended the Ime-Obi, proceeded to the Enugu Government House for a joint meeting with the Governors of the South East.
At the Meeting, representatives of Ime-Obi Ohanaeze conveyed to the Governors key elements of Ime-Obi deliberations at her meeting earlier in the day.
In turn, the Vice Chairman of the Security Committee of the Governors, briefed the joint meeting on the deteriorating state of insecurity in the South-East.
At the meeting it was resolved that both the Governors and Ime-Obi should work together to promote a common Security Agenda for Alaigbo.
In keeping with the above, it was agreed that Ime-Obi should be fully appraised of the Security proposals by the Governors of the South East and that Ime-Obi would come up with its own proposals, so that Ndigbo can evolve one comprehensive and adequate set of Agenda to meet the Security Challenges in the South East. And indeed in Alaigbo in general.
Reports on the Alarming State of Insecurity in Alaigbo.
If anyone at those meetings was in doubt about the grave dangers of insecurity facing Ndigbo, such doubts were confounded by two very terrifying reports received at both the Ime-Obi Ohanaeze and the Joint meeting with the Governors.
At the Ime Obi meeting, the former President-General of Ohanaeze, Chief Enwo-Igariwey from Ebonyi State, narrated a very heart-rending account of the Security Situation in Ebony State. According to him, the Fulani herdsmen and insurgents have taken over many of the farms with their cattle ravaging farm crops. The farmers and the people are hardly able to access their farms because of the menacing presence and threats from the herdsmen and insurgents wielding AK 47 and other dangerous weapons. Not only farms and crops but their women and daughters as well as the men are desecrated. Killing and kidnapping are the order of the day.
Next at the Joint Meeting with the Governors at the Enugu Governor’s Lodge, the Vice Chairman of the Security Committee set up by the SE Governors, Mr. Aduba CP Rtd, presented even a more harrowing picture of the state of insecurity in the South-East. According to his account. what exists today in the South-East is not just a threat of insecurity, it is that the entire zone has been occupied or simply overrun by the insurgents. What is worse is that there exists a state of utter hopelessness in the face of the grave dangers facing the people of the South East.
That Joint-meeting of Ime-Obi Ohanaeze and the Governors Forum undoubtedly raised some hopes. It was, therefore, expected that –
certain immediate and urgent consultations would take place towards implementing the decisions of the Ime-Obi regarding setting up of two Committees.
Proposed consultations between the Ime-Obi and the Governors Forum would quickly take place to ensure the emergence of a Regional Security Agenda for the South East.
All the above did not take place before news came about a Security Summit of the Nigerian Police and the SE Governors.
Security Summit of the Nigerian Police and the SE Governors.
The next we heard was that a Security Summit had been convened by the Governors and the Inspector-General of Police. And that at the Summit, the South-East Governors have accepted and adopted Community Policing proposed by the Nigerian Police as an effective tool in bringing policing to the grassroots.
Composition of the Security Summit by the Nigerian Police and the SE Governors.
There were two segments of this Security Summit –
The first segment during when the actual decisions were taken by the Police and the Governors.
The second was during when the decisions were formally announced to a larger audience.
According to the Communiqué there were twenty (20) participants in that first substantive meeting
Five (5) from Alaigbo
Four Governors and One Deputy Governor
Fifteen (15) from the Nigerian Police.
DIG 2 Igbo 1
AIG 5 Igbo None
CP 5 Igbo None
DCP Igbo 1.
None Igbo 13
This is the composition of the participants from the Nigerian Police Force who have come to plan for the Security of Alaigbo.
The Communiqué of the Summit of the SE Governors and the Nigerian Police.
According to the communiqué of this SE Security Summit, the South-East State Governors have accepted and adopted Community Policing as an effective tool in bringing policing to the grassroots.
It is important to note two things about this Summit and its outcome
that it was the SE Governors who accepted and adopted the so-called Community Policing Plan and not the People of the South East whose security is being planned. It is the people of the SE whom are the victims of the horrendous state of insecurity revealed by both Mr Enwo-Igariwey, former Ohanaeze PG and Mr Aduba, CP rtd and Vice Chairman of the Security Committee set up by the SE Governors Forum.
However, what was adopted was
COMMUNITY POLICING PLAN and not
SECURITY AGENDA FOR THE SOUTH-EAST
AND INDEED FOR THE ENTIRE REGION OF ALAIGBO.
If we understand this development thus (and it is the correct way for Ndigbo to understand it) then two things follow as the appropriate reaction to the SUMMIT of the SE GOVERNORS and the NIGERIAN POLICE .
A critical but constructive appraisal of the POLICING PLAN, which is the program and an affair of the Nigerian Police meant to be their contribution in tackling the GRAVE STATE OF INSECURITY IN ALAIGBO.
The Creation of an Appropriate SECURITY AGENDA (with an appropriate supportive laws and structures) for tackling the acute state of insecurity in Alaigbo, a bit of which were highlighted by Chief Igariwey during the meeting of Ime-Obi Ohanaeze at Enugu on the 9th of February as well as the that contained in the Report of Mr Aduba, CP rtd who is the Vice Chairman of the Security Committee set up by the Governors of the South-East.
Thus, the POLICING PLAN of the Nigerian Police is neither a substitute for nor in principle mutually opposed to the a SOUTH SECURITY AGENDA which is to be put in place by the people of the South East and their Governors, Legislators and Stakeholders, PROVIDED
The POLICING PLAN of the Nigerian Police is not a FULANI PLAN to subdue and overrun the South East, nay the entire Igbo nation.
Understanding the proposed COMMUNITY POLICING PLAN
Information reaching us indicates that already there has long been a Security Program of the Nigerian Police in the South East called POLICING PLAN.
The so-called POLICING PLAN was set up and operated solely by the Nigerian Police. It is meant to monitor and moderate what they call FARMERS-HERDERS CLASH in the South East. The senior officers of the POLICING PLAN are non-Igbos, mostly Fulani Police Officers. They also recruit local members of the body of the POLICING PLAN, most of who are junior and subordinate officers and other unsuspecting members of the public.
Reports from the field monitors of the Policing Plan which are not in favour of the Herders, are frowned upon and demand made for any such report to be torn and so they get torn immediately.
It is our hope that it is not this outrageous outfit that the Enugu Security Summit organized by the Nigerian Police that is being elevated to what is now CALLED COMMUNITY POLICING FOR THE SOUTH-EAST.
From the above, it is important to underscore the point that this POLICING PLAN of the Nigerian Police has been IN OPERATION IN THE SOUTH EAST while the horrors in Ebonyi State as depicted in the Report of Chief Igariwey at the last Ime-Obi meeting as well as that depicted in the Report by Mr Aduba CP rtd at the Joint meeting of Ime-Obi and the Governors Forum, all those horrors rather than abating have been rising in crescendo with our helpless people wondering if they have any Government or leaders who care for their plight.
It is Possible that the Governors of the South East are ignorant of the truth of the POLICING PLAN as it has been in operation in the South East. And this is because they do not work with the people they are elected to serve. They rather work with the Oti Nkpus and the Oji Akpa elu ozus in the South East.
REACTIONS TO THE POLICING PLAN OF THE SE GOVERNORS AND THE NIGERIAN POLICE
There have been several negative reactions, indeed widespread condemnations by the people to this development – the idea of so-called COMMUNITY POLICING as the ultimate panacea to the dangerous Security situation in Alaigbo.
PART F.Position of the Alaigbo Development Foundation (ADF).
ADF totally and unequivocally reject this so-called COMMUNITY POLICING for the South East.
We stand by the message conveyed as a DISTRESS CALL to the Igbo leaders and Stakeholders presented to the last Ime- Obi Ohanaeze. That position was signed by over twenty (20) Civil Society and pan-Igbo organizations. Based on that ADF therefore affirm the following –
The Security of Alaigbo is a joint responsibility between the Government and the People of Alaigbo.
ADF is not opposed to any genuine and positive role of the Federal Government and her agencies in helping to tackle the prevailing state of grave insecurity in Alaigbo, provided –
That such role by Federal Agencies must be under the exercise and full control of personnel of our zone.
The primary Security outfit for the protection of Alaigbo must be that created by the Government and people of Alaigbo.
ADF shall continue to work with those genuine and patriotic authorities and civil society organizations in Alaigbo including our Governors, Ohanaeze, the Churches, the traditional institutions, etc, to protect and advance the interest of our people and the entire Igbo nation!
PROF. UZODINMA NWALA
PROF. NATH ANIEKWU
BISHOP OBI UDEZUE ONUBOGU
Chairman, ADF BoT
PROF ELO. AMUCHEAZI
ADF Vice President
BARR MAX OZOAKA
Director. ADF Legal Bureau
HON ABIA ONYIKE
Chairman ADF Publicity Bureau
To Receive a delegation of the Alaigbo Development Foundation (ADF) on Tour of the United States of America Held at the First Immanuel Church, 1126 South Ashland Chicago, Illinois, September 9. 2018.
A Forum of Igbo Communities in Chicago, USA was convened by the leadership of Igbo Communities in Chicago to receive the President of Alaigbo Development Foundation (ADF) and his team who are on a visit to United States of America to exchange views with the Igbo Diaspora on the current challenges of survival and development of Alaigbo.
In his address to the Forum, the President of ADF, Professor Uzudinma Nwala, spoke on the issues of Igbo Regional Integration; Homeland Security; the on-going ethnic and religious cleansing in Nigeria; the militarization of Alaigbo and the brute torture of her women and youths; the infiltration and occupation of ancestral homes of Alaigbo by trained Fulani insurgents masquerading in various guises; the imperative of self-defense as fundamental natural right of Alaigbo and all humanity; the neglect of Alaigbo in the distribution of immense foreign aid flowing into the coffers of Federal Republic of Nigeria; the seizure of the organs of organs of state authority and concentration of same in the hands of one ethnic group – the President’s kinsmen; urgent necessity of Youth Empowerment programs to alleviate the excruciating level of poverty in Alaigbo; the need to drive the Akuruo-Ulo (Invest-At-Home) Movement as a vital element in the Rebirth and Development of Alaigbo, ETC..
The ADF President also spoke on the latest attempts to define the future of Alaigbo with particular reference to the Awka Declaration hosted by the Ohaneze Ndigbo which President Buhari has dismissed as Personal Agenda. He narrated the background to the Enugu Declaration of July 28, 2018 as a Re-affirmation of Igbo Position and which has been endorsed by over sixteen pan-Igbo and pro-Biafra organizations, including major stakeholders in Alaigbo.
On the fundamental position of the Enugu Declaration, the ADF President explained the need to synergize all the committed patriotic view-points in Alaigbo.
According to ADF President, there are two positions in Alaigbo today,
- Those who want Ndigbo to continue to remain as part of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in the expectation that the situation of Ndigbo will get better, and
- Those who believe that after 104 years the artificial Federal has remained a grave yard for Ndigbo.
However, those Igbo citizens who wish to remain in Nigeria also believe in and demand their inalienable right of Ndigbo to self- determination, insisting that any continued political union of Ndigbo with their neighbors in Nigeria must be based on the fundamental principle of free choice, the choice to remain or opt out of the union; the recognition that Alaigbo is a Nation, a land of free peoples and therefore, any union with any other nation must be based on the hallowed principle of Self-determination.
It is to be noted that Alaigbo did not become part of the Federal Republic of Nigeria initially out of choice, but by force, due to the determination of a foreign power that led to the Amalgamation of 1914.
In light of the above, if Alaigbo is to remain as part of Nigeria, Alaigbo must be recognized as An Autonomous Self Governing Region, In full Control of our Lives, Our land, Our Resources and Our Security and Legal System; Free to Relate To The World, But Collectively Agreeing On A Union With Our neighbors in Nigeria or with those Willing To Live Under The Same Principle Of Self-Determination as we Cherish and desire for Ourselves.
HOWEVER, if this fundamental national right of Ndigbo is ultimately rejected by the forces of hegemony dominating the affairs of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Ndigbo shall opt out of Nigeria and Establish The INDEPENDENT REPUBLIC OF ALAIGBO or whatever name we chose to name our independent Republic.
For Alaigbo, this is the Option of Self- Determination and Freedom, guaranteed by our Creator and enshrined in the United Nation’s Charter of People Rights as well as African Charter on Human Rights.
This is the position which has been clearly articulated in the Enugu Declaration as a Reaffirmation of Igbo Position on their Future. It has received the endorsement of the two shades of opinion in Alaigbo.
Finally, the ADF President distributed the text of the Enugu Declaration which was read and discussed at the Forum.
The ADF President briefed the participants on the programs and activities of ADF since its birth which has made it a major voice in the Igbo struggle and affairs.
The Forum engaged in spirited discussion on the Speech of the ADF President, fielding fundamental questions, expressing the concerns of the Igbo Diaspora over the urgent need to ensure that the survival of Ndigbo and development of Alaigbo are not neglected or compromised; the need for synergy of all patriotic citizens of Alaigbo, the special role of Igbo Diaspora in helping to pilot the struggle for the survival and development of Alaigbo, etc.
Finally, the Chicago Forum resolves as follows:
- To recognize and express deep satisfaction over the emergency and achievements of the Alaigbo Development Foundation (ADF) as well as the new strategic impetus it has brought to the struggle to chart a new course for the survival and development of Alaigbo
- The forum called on the ADF to help promote greater synergy and focus among all the groups and forces presently engaged in the struggle to liberate Alaigbo from the shackle of annihilation.
- The Forum urged the Ohaneze Ndigbo and the State Governments in Alaigbo to recognize and support the role of the Alaigbo Development Foundation (ADF) in the affairs of Alaigbo.
- The Forum firmly endorsed the ENUGU DECLEARATION and calls on UmuIgbo to align the Igbo struggle to establish the Igbo Nation either as An Autonomous Region in the new Federal Union or as An Independent Republic if the first option is rejected by the forces of hegemony in Nigeria
- The Forum condemns the military occupation of Alaigbo, the killings of Igbo citizens by the Nigerian military and Fulani insurgents, the harassment and torture of Igbo citizens as if they are disposable items or slaves whose lives do not matter.
- The Forum condemns the recent arrest, torture and detention of Igbo women who were peacefully demanding the release of Nnamdi Kalu, the IPOB leader.
- The Forum called on the Federal Government of Nigeria to release Nnamdi Kanu and his parents who disappeared during the invasion of Alaigbo by the Nigerian Army under the guise of OPERATION PYTHON DANCE since 2017 and also release all IPOB and other freedom agitators in the Prison.
- The Forum condemns the seizure of all the organs of governance in the Federal Republic of Nigeria, to wit the Executive, the Judiciary, the Military, Security forces and Civil Authority by Fulani leaders and their agents, who have virtually rendered the Federal Legislature comatose.
- The Forum calls on all the citizens of Alaigbo to support all measures to ensure the Security of Igbo Homeland, defend the fundamental right of Alaigbo as an Autonomous Self- Governing, Region, effectively in charge of the protection of the lives of her citizens and Security and to freely participate in global affairs in pursuit of the welfare and survival of her citizens.
Alaigbo must not compromise her right of free association with her neighbors either in a Federal Union of Nigeria or Biafra based on the principle of Self- determination and the right to opt out of the such union if we so wish.
- The forum calls for an urgent need of action to promote Youth Empowerment through promoting food production, through re-launching the Food Army Program that sustained Ndigbo and her neighbors during the Biafra War.
- The Forum calls on Igbo businessmen and women to help promote the Akuro-Ulo (Invest-At -Home) program initiated by ADF
- The Forum urges the Governments in Alaigbo to provide the enabling legal and political environment to promote investments in Alaigbo .
- The Forum congratulates the Governments in Alaigbo for their courage in rejecting the attempt to seize Alaigbo through spurious creation of Cattle Grazing Colony.
- The Forum pledged support for the anti-Open Grazing Bill which the Alaigbo Development Foundation (ADF) has placed before the States in House of Assembly in Alaigbo.
- The Forum urges Umuigbo to render financial and other forms of support to all the legal cases instituted to challenge the brutal and arrogant killings and torture of Umuigbo.
- The Forum took a decision to work with other Igbo Organizations and Igbo Stakeholders and Organizations to host an IGBO SUMMIT in Chicago as soon as consultations and arrangements can be concluded. The Igbo Community organization in Chicago shall host the IGBO SUMMIT.
Long Live the Igbo Nation
Long live all the Communities of civilized nations, the World Over!!
Friday Nwokeoma Onwukwe
President Igbo Associations of Chicago
Adamazi Adanna Okoro
Dr. Ndieze Nnawuchi:
Chief Emeka Nnadi
Mr. Emeka Ukachukwu
Prince Odinakachi Ubani
Mr. Hardy Ogele
Pastor Victor Anukem
Rev. Paulicap Nwachukwu
Dr. Sam. Enyia
Mr. Chidi Enyia
Dr. K.K. Odeluga
Dr. Mrs. Odeluga
Professor Uzodinma Nwala
President Alaigbo Development Foundation
On behalf of the ADF Delegation
SIGNED: On behalf of the Conveners:
Chief Eddie Nwosu
Chairman, Committee of Conveners.