The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has
called on Nigeria’s international partners to designate the Indigenous
People of Biafra (IPOB) a terrorist organisation.
The Minister made the call in his article, entitled ”Thwarting Terrorism in Nigeria”, which appeared in the US newspaper ‘Washington Times’ on Thursday
He argues that IPOB’s actions qualify the group as a terrorist organisation in most jurisdictions.
On 20th Sept 2017, the Federal Government of Nigeria proscribed IPOB,
which has been violently agitating for a separate state in the South-East.
“The terror lays bare their opportunism. They masquerade as a separatist movement, yet they endanger the very people they claim to
represent. In reality, IPOB cares about IPOB and nothing more,” Alhaji
Using the words of IPOB leader Nnamdi Kanu, such as “If they fail to
give us Biafra, Somalia will look like a paradise compared to what
will happen to that ‘zoo’ (Nigeria).” “I don’t want peaceful
actualisation (of Biafra)”; “We need guns and we need bullets”; “If
they don’t (give us Biafra), they will die,” the Minister exposes IPOB
as a terrorist organisation like ETA in Spain, the Tamil Tigers in
Sri Lanka, and the PKK in Turkey (all of whom are proscribed by the
U.S. State Department).
He makes clear that this administration will not make the same mistake
as the previous in allowing terrorists to capture the land.
“The government reiterates its appeal to its international partners to
proscribe the organization, and in doing so, starve it of the funds
which gives it sustenance. Nigeria has just defeated one preventable
terrorist insurgency. This one must not be given the chance to get a
foothold,” the Minister writes.