Owerri Declaration: Igbo leaders demand autonomous status for Igboland

Igbo leaders and development groups in Igboland, weekend rose from the 2019 Igbo National Summit with a demand for the autonomy of Igbo land and her neighbours.

The summit was convened by Alaigbo Development Foundation (ADF) led by Prof. Uzodimma Nwala; World Igbo Congress (WIC) led by Prof. Anthony Ejiofor; Association of South-East Town Unions (ASETU) led by Chief Emeka Diwe and Christian Association of Nigeria, South-East (CAN-SE) led by Bishop Goddy Okafor.

The summit which was convened primarily to discuss the peace, security and development of Igboland and her neighbours, regretted that the endemic instability in Nigeria was due to the inherent incompatibility of values among the dominant religions, traditions and cultures of its indigenous ethnic nationalities.

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Participants regretted that the democratic norms that would have provided the regulatory and binding force for all Nigerians is missing by the deliberate machination of a few.

A communiqué signed by 11 Igbo groups read in part: “The participant note that today the Federal Republic of Nigeria as it exists today is a phantom political state which has lost all the basic principles of rule of law, justice, equity and humane values; anarchy now prevails in all spheres of the society.”

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The communiqué continued: “Given the daunting and unabated militarization of our homeland by extortionist Police and Military agents of state, the senseless and conscienceless killing of our clergy, the condescending sacking of our churches, villages and rural communities, the routine rape of our women, mothers, wives and daughters, the wilful destruction of farmlands and humiliating desecration of our sacred traditional grooves, shrines and deities by ravaging terrorist Fulani herdsmen; the immolate destruction of our lives and properties; and the wanton implementation of the obnoxious RUGA policy despite widespread citizen rejection and resistance, we hereby declare that our people are no longer willing to live a life of meaningless existence in Nigeria.”

Furthermore, it urged that Ndigbo and her willing neighbours be regarded as an autonomous region, with the right to full control of her territory, her resources, her executive and legislative institutions, her judiciary, her economic and social resources among other things.

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