ABUJA – South-East activists under the umbrella of International Society for Civil Liberties & the Rule of Law (Intersociety) and Southeast Based Coalition of Human Rights Organizations (SBCHROs) have vehemently denied naming immediate past Anambra State Governor, Mr. Peter Obi, Deputy Senate President, Chief Ike Ekweremadu, and 21 others as sponsors of Pro-Biafra groups.
Intersociety and SBCHROs made the denial Sunday night in a statement in which they lambasted controversial portal Naija.com for “the wicked, scandalous and malicious publication”. While the notorious portal claimed to have sourced its story from Daily Times, the two rights groups said it merely “wickedly doctored and twisted doctor . . . our clearly stated and spelt out statement of 2nd June 2017.”
The statement reads: “The attention of the leaderships of Int’l Society for Civil Liberties & the Rule of Law (Intersociety) and Southeast Based Coalition of Human Rights Organizations (SBCHROs) have been drawn to the above underlined wicked publication titled: Intersociety & SBCHROs name Peter Obi, Ike Ekweremadu and 21 Others As Sponsors of Insurgency of the Pro Biafran Groups. The wicked, scandalous and malicious publication was published few hours ago this evening being 4th June 2017 by the Naija.com with one Kess Ewubare as its author. The Naija.com claimed that the highly malicious and scandalous story originally emanated from Daily Times. The link to the scandalous story is here: https://www.naija.ng/1967-ekweremadu-peter-obi-sponsoring-biafra-movement-group-alleges.html.
“The scandalous publication of the Naija.com had criminally listed the following as its manufactured sponsors of its imaginary “insurgency of the pro Biafran groups”: 1. Amnesty International, 2. Alaigbo Development Foundation, 3. Igbo Youth Movement, 4. Ike Ekweremadu, 5. Peter Obi; 6. Joe Achuzia, 7. US Embassy in Nigeria, 8. Mike Akuoma, 9. Ugochukwu Chinwuba, 10. Ikechukwu Okoye, 12. Prince Emeka Onyeso, 13. Okechukwu Nwanguma, 14. Aloysius Attah, 15. Ibuchukwu Ezike, 16. Tochukwu Ezeoke and his Igbo Ekunie group, 17. Justus and Justine Ijeomas, 18. Alex Olisa, Damian Ugwu, 19. Damian Ogudike, Tools & Allied Market and its leadership, 20. Ekwenche Group, USA, 21. Uche Asiegbu, 22. George Onyeibe, 23. Samuel Kamanyoku and others
“We have few hours ago been bombarded with calls from our friends, supporters, partners and others concerned including our friends in the security establishments drawing our prompt attention to the said scandalous statement. The calls came barely hours after we deliberated on ongoing smear campaign by the same Igbo enemies to stampede the Federal Government, the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court and Hon Justice Binta Nyako into revocation of Citizen Nnamdi’s bail. We had during the deliberation, also read and studied the ongoing similar smear campaign and statement emanating from the 82nd Division of the Nigerian Army, labeling IPOB as “transformed armed militias” and how “the Army escaped its ambush”. The leadership of Intersociety led by Emeka Umeagbalasi was consequently pleaded with to issue a statement in response to same.
“We understand that the publishers of the scandalous publication wickedly doctored and twisted our coalition’s statement of 2nd June 2017, titled”: Why The Three New Faces (Obi, Kanu & Ekweremadu) Of Socio-Political Reawakening In Igbo Land Must Not Be Found Wanting. The statement was widely published as authored by the web or online media and among those that published same is here: http://newsrescue.com/south-east-activists-query-obianos-50000-two-suvs-gifts-nnamdi-kanu/
“Our checks to ascertain the gravity of doctoring and distortion of the referenced publication of ours by the Naija.com and its primary source, if any, clearly showed that it was our commendation segment or part of the statement that was wickedly doctored and twisted: We have in the statement in which a number of issues were critically addressed singled out friendly groups and individuals including media practitioners, diplomats, local and int’l human rights activists and groups as well as other friendly academia groups, socio-cultural groups and artisans like Keke and Okada riders; likewise some IPOB activists and traders; for special commendation for volunteering useful human rights or humanitarian information or speaking out against heinous rights abuses against innocent and unarmed pro Biafra campaigners.
“The trio of Peter Obi, Ike Ekweremadu and Nnamdi Kanu were mentioned for speaking out at one point or the other concerning the killing of unarmed and defenseless Igbo citizens particularly the killing of innocent and unarmed members of IPOB and MASSOB. They were also strongly advised and cautioned on account of their current status as 2016 distinguished Igbo personalities of the year to always live aboard and identify with Igbo People and their genuine cause of Igbo Emancipation.
“For the avoidance of doubt, the commendation segment or part of our statement under reference is reproduced as follows: The following are worthy of commendation for their priceless and immeasurable roles in the human rights, humanitarian, research, documentation and media advocacy aspects of the nonviolent pro Biafra campaigns in Nigeria so far. They are Amnesty Int’l, SBCHROs, Intersociety, Alaigbo Development Foundation, Igbo Youth Movement, Ike Ekweremadu, Peter Obi, Joe Achuzia, US Embassy in Nigeria, Mike Akuoma, Ugochukwu Chinwuba, Ikechukwu Okoye, Clifford Iloanya, Prince Emeka Onyeso, Okechukwu Nwanguma, Aloysius Attah, Ibuchukwu Ezike, Tochukwu Ezeoke and his Igbo Ekunie group, Justus and Justine Ijeomas, Alex Olisa, Damian Ugwu, Damian Ogudike, Tools & Allied Market and its leadership, Ekwenche Group, USA, Uche Asiegbu, George Onyeibe, Samuel Kamanyoku.
Others are Isaac Umunna and his News Express Online, Daniel and Tim Elombah and their Elomba Reports, Madam Aziza Uko and her Trent Online, Emeka Odugwu and his Odogwu Blog, Chidi Opara and his Chidiopara Reports, Henry Oduenyi and his Nigerian Voice, James Ezema and his Street Reporters, Naija.Com, Nairaland, Barrister Chioma Kate Unini and her Nigerian Lawyer Online, Mazi Odera, Uchenna Madu, Barristers Ifeanyi Ejiofor, Chuks Muoma (SAN), Emmanuel Onyejena and his Allnewsandreports.
“The rest are Chinwe Umeche, Uzochukwu Oguejiofor, Obianuju Joy Igboeli, Florence Akubilo, Ndidiamaka Bernard; the Galaxy TV and its Southeast crew, Minaj TV, Vanguard Newspaper, Innocent Anaba and his InosReport, Leonard Sobechi of Guardian Newspaper, Senator Iroegbu and Dave Eleke of This Day Newspaper, Today Online, Uncova Online, the Authority Newspaper, the Premium Times, Emmanuel Mayah, Mary Ann Onwuchekwa, Anita Foster, Tony Okafor, the Independent Newspaper, Champion Newspaper, Alphonsus Nweze, Cyprain Ebele, to mention but a few.
“The purpose of their commendation was also clearly mentioned and they are: “their priceless and immeasurable roles in the human rights, humanitarian, research, documentation and media advocacy aspects of the nonviolent pro Biafra campaigns in Nigeria so far”. Peter Obi and Ike Ekweremadu were commended for speaking out in several public forums against the massacre of scores of pro Biafra activists and other supporters of the IPOB campaigns as well as their several calls for the release of Nnamdi Kanu and other detained pro Biafra campaigners.
“The US Embassy was commended because of its periodic concerns and enquiries strictly on human rights and humanitarian situations and concerns as they concern the Federal Government’s poor handling of the nonviolent pro Biafra campaigns. Amnesty Int’l was commended for its dogged efforts at ensuring justice for victims of anti Biafra campaigns’ violent crackdowns by Nigerian security forces. The likes of Barristers Ifeanyi Ejiofor, Chuks Muoma (SAN), Chinwe Umeche, etc are known members of IPOB/Nnamdi Kanu’s legal team who have assisted us in the area of research and documentation leading to their inclusion in our commendation segment of the statement.
“Barristers Florence Akubilo, Obianuju Igboeli and Ndidiamaka Bernard are known key volunteers of Intersociety. Damian Ugwu, Ibuchukwu Ezike, Damian Ogudike, Justus Ijeoma, Justine Ijeoma, Okechukwu Nwanguma, Alex Olisa, Aloysius Attah etc are well known human rights activists. Their roles in human rights, humanitarian, research and documentation aspects of anti Biafra campaigns’ violent crackdowns were deeply appreciated leading to their names being singled out for commendation. Comrade Okechukwu Nwanguma, for instance, is the national coordinator of the Network on Police Reforms in Nigeria or NOPRIN, likewise Comrade Ibuchukwu Ezike who is the Executive Director of the Civil Liberties Organization. Comrade Aloysius Attah is the present Chairman of the Southeast Zone of the CLO.
“The likes of Clifford Iloanya, George Onyeibe, etc also assisted us immeasurably with useful information during our various human rights interventions. The likes of Mike Akuoma, Ugochukwu Chinweuba, Samuel Kamanyoku, etc, are traders who assisted us with useful grassroots and linking information during our several visits and locations of hospitals and clinics where shot and wounded and slain pro Biafra campaigners and other slain and wounded innocent citizens were kept.
“The names and owners of the media outfits singled out for commendation in our commendation segment are those who published our advocacy reports connected to grievous human rights violations by Nigerian security forces in their grossly poor management of the pro Biafra agitation. All those media practitioners mentioned published our reports free of charge till date.
“Above all, the Judgment of the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court, presided over by Hon Justice Binta Murtala Nyako, to the effect that “IPOB is not an unlawful organisation or society” still subsists till date and has not been set aside.
“It therefore shocks and surprises us as what the Naija.com and its team wants to achieve by drawing a battle line with organisations and persons whose human rights advocacy mandates in Nigeria are widely known and clearly defined including Amnesty Int’l and US Embassy in Nigeria; by magisterially, wickedly, maliciously, scandalously and wickedly labeling them “terrorism financiers and collaborators”. While we are not surprised a bit at such deadly antics, our purpose of issuing this late night rebuttal statement is to disabuse the minds of un-attentive public and overzealous members of the security establishments to take immediate note.
“We shall be meeting soonest to discuss further actions to be taken against the publishers of the Naija.com and others who acted at the behest or instance of the named malicious publishers; for having the audacity or effrontery to doctor and twist our clearly stated and spelt out statement of 2nd June 2017. At the appropriate time, the named wicked corporate and individual citizens will legally, lawfully and actionably be made to tell the law and man how Amnesty Int’l, Intersociety, SBCHROs, US Embassy, Alaigbo Dev Foundation, Galaxy TV, Vanguard Newspaper, Guardian Newspaper, the named human rights activists, etc have become sponsors and collaborators of insurgency of pro Biafran groups or terrorism in Nigeria or any part thereof.”
Source: News Express