The Pan-Igbo socio-cultural group, Ohaneze Ndigbo, said it would resist any attempt to discredit Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu.
Mr. Ekweremadu faces the prospects of losing some of his assets following legal moves by the federal government. The government accuses him of owning local and foreign assets he did not declare as expected by law to the Code of Conduct Bureau. He has, however, denied any wrongdoing, saying he declared all his assets.
The President-General of Ohaneze, Nnia Nwodo, in a statement on Thursday in Enugu, said it was preposterous for the federal government to be carrying out unwarranted inquisition into Mr. Ekweremadu’s life.
He said that the allegation that Mr. Ekweremadu, the highest ranking Igbo politician in the country, embezzled public funds without any prima facie case was inappropriate.
Mr. Nwodo stated that the idea of asking the senator to defend himself instead of his accusers showing how he fraudulently enriched himself, amounted to turning the law upside down.
He said Mr. Ekweremadu is a revered Igbo son and had attracted a lot of development to his area without any previous accusation of embezzlement.
“Sen. Ekweremadu is a revered Igbo son whose public image is very high and who has attracted a lot of development to his area; he has never occupied any public office where he was accused of embezzlement.”
The president-general queried the system of investigation where one was tried for simply belonging to a political party “and is exonerated of an offence he committed for belonging to a political party or being in government.”
He said some serving military officers had been let off the hook either through plea bargain or for just changing from one political party to another.
He also said that a former governor of Enugu State whose property was under investigation was now dining with the head of state after dumping his former party for the ruling party.
Mr. Nwodo warned that the apex Igbo group would no longer fold it arms while Igbo sons were being systematically singled out for persecution in a country they had contributed so much to build.
He observed that the cautionary statement by Mr. Ekweremadu had been and was still being echoed by many prominent Nigerians and wondered why his case would be different.
He said that it was such selective justice and marginalization of Ndigbo that fuelled agitations by their young ones for self-determination, adding that restructuring was a first step toward assuaging the situation. (NAN)