From Femi Oyelola, Kaduna
Youths from the 19 Northern states, otherwise known as the Arewa Youth Forum, (AYF) have said the only way to put an end to the activities of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) was to expose and prosecute those behind the illegal organization.
The group made their position known in a statement signed by the National President, Alhaji Gambo Ibrahim Gujungu and made available to the media in Kaduna yesterday.
The northern group also commended the federal government for the way and manner it tackled the IPOB issue, insisting that those financing the organization must be brought to book to make sure that they do not re – emerge under another platform.
“Following the recent upheavals that engulfed the country over the altercation between the Nigerian Army and the now illegal Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) we see it as expedient to raise some issues as as per cursor to future occurrence in the country.”
“We are happy to hear from the minister of information, Lai Muhammed that the federal government is aware of the sponsors and even financial headquarters of IPOB.
“But we are of the believe that our joy and that of all well meaning Nigerians will be complete when we know the names of these sponsors and they are brought to justice for their crime against the good people of this country.”
“As the umbrella organization of all youths in the 19 Northern states and Abuja, we want to commend the Federal government and the Judiciary for being on the same page in tackling a menace that threatened to consume the country if it was not well handled. But thank God for wise counsel and the maturity of some of our political leaders in tackling the problem aptly.
“However, we will want to reiterate just like we said previously that government should be proactive in dealing with these issues when they do arise. It is in view of this that we are calling on the federal government to get to the root of the sponsors and those that are financing such devilish organizations against the country,” the statement read in part.
AYF said the sponsors of IPOB must be brought to justice for their crime against the good people of this country.
“This will serve as a deterrent to others who might be planning such acts and also ensure that IPOB did not transmute to anything or reappear in another form.
“Having played a leading role in stabilizing the polity in what ordinarily would have led to reprisals, unwanton destruction of life’s and property following the unwarranted attacks on northerners by the members of the IPOB terrorists in the South East, AYF wish to also thank leaders of taught in the whole of the north for their intervention and fatherly role in making sure that Nigerians of South Eastern extraction in our midst in the north were well protected and there was no crisis anywhere in the region.
“It is our believe that this is what is needed for a truly one Nigeria, where every citizen can reside anywhere in the country and call it home, without fear of intimidation or harassment.
“AYF want to call on Nigerians to cherish this democracy we are practicing and guide it jealously. All grievances and agitations should be channel through the appropriate machinery, “the statement further said.