Chief Willy Ezugwu, President and National Coordinator, SERG
The pan-Igbo sociopolitical pressure organisation, the South East Revival Group (SERG) has warned the Federal Government and the five Governors in the eastern states not to take steps that could worsen the security situation in the region, saying that “the cost of reckless utterances and unguarded actions may consume the zone.”
The SERG in a statement signed by its President and National Coordinator, Chief Willy Ezugwu said “if the Federal and state governments continue to act or speak irrationally, the entire country will be worse for it.
“There is no where in the world that a people who have been nursing a feeling of injustice over the years is confronted with the coercive powers of the state without regrettable consequences.
“In case we have forgotten, the extrajudicial killing of Mohammed Yusuf, the founder of the Boko Haram Islamic sect, by the state forces was what directly or indirectly led to the escalation of the terrorist activities destroying the economy of Northern Nigeria.
“Since the federal government failed to employ a carrot and stick approach early enough, we have seen insurgency in the North worsening as bandits and Boko Haram fighters compete for prominence in the whole country.
“Also, killer herders that President Muhammadu Buhari openly admitted that they are not Nigerians have slowly spread into the Southern parts of the country.
“We therefore warn that a declaration of a state of emergency in any part of the South East will be counterproductive with dire consequences.
“The deprived and excluded people of the South East are already angry that the Federal Government carelessly failed to protect them from killer herdsmen when they needed security protection.
“The Federal government’s threat of declaration of a state of emergency in the region is already being seen as a rigging strategy ahead of the November 6 governorship election in Anambra State.
“If a state of emergency has not been declared in Zamfara, Sokoto, Kaduna, Niger, and Katsina states where bandits have virtually taken over most of the local governments, and telephone services cut, what is the justification for a threat to declare a state of emergency in Eastern Nigeria?
“South East governors who are opening the doors of confrontation should know that the inferno of the crisis which is looming in the South East may consume all.
“If Northern Governors and clerics can visit bandits, negotiate with terrorists, and even grant amnesty to killers of our sons and daughters in the armed forces, what is the big deal in dialoguing with youths of the South East who have been crying for justice in the region?
“How would anyone think that complicating the already bad situation through unguarded statements and actions be deemed a reasonable option in the circumstance?”, the SERG queried.