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Ohanaeze Ndigbo will present important requests to Tinubu




The apex-Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo is planning certain demands before President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to smoothen what a source called South-West, South-East relationship in the Nigerian polity.

Sources knowledgeable about the operations of the organisation told the Nigerian Tribune that leaders of the pan-Igbo organisation are worried about the continued detention of the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, who has been in detention since the days of the immediate past President Muhammadu Buhari.

It was learnt that previous efforts by an amalgamation of groups, including political leaders, governors of the South-East states, and Ohanaeze, aimed at securing reprieve for Kanu had failed to yield results because of what a source described as apparent politicisation of the bid.

It was learnt that the direct involvement of some governors in the initial efforts might have worked against its success as the powers that be might have read political, rather than regional stability meanings into the bid.

A source, however, said that a fresh bid to secure the release of Kanu, aside from attaining some collaborative measures with the Federal Government, was underway.

The source said that Ohanaeze Ndigbo is concerned about the tense political situation that characterised the 2023 elections, especially in Lagos State, where the Labour Party (LP) upstaged the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) during the presidential election.

It was also learnt that leaders of the Ohanaeze Ndigbo are worried that such a tense situation should not be allowed to resurface between the sons and daughters of Igboland and the people of the South-West now that Tinubu from the South-West is President.

“The apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation is not keeping quiet on the possible political solution to the matter of Nnamdi Kanu. But that’s not the only issue. The body is looking at several issues and it is planning to table some key demands before President Tinubu once the issues are firmed up,” a source in the know said, adding that a meeting will come up later this week to fine-tune the issues.

Another source said that though the elders must get a reprieve for Kanu as much as possible, the issues to be put together at an upcoming meeting will be all-encompassing.

“We want to cement the relationship between the South-West and the South-East. The era of relentless tension and suspicion between the two regions should be over by now. If we want to run a united Nigeria, the South-West and the South-East cannot continue to relate based on mutual suspicion, another source said.

The source said that the issues to be put forward to Tinubu would cut across politics, socio-economic and relationships and developmental matters as they affect Igboland. There would also be consideration for the growing insecurity in the South East, a source said.

For instance, a source added that ecological issues have created huge challenges in states of the South-East for many years now, while the Federal Government has done very little to alleviate the sufferings of the people.

It was learned that once the meeting fine tunes the key issues to be tabled before President Tinubu, which he said would revolve around insecurity in the South-East, the socio-political and economic tension being witnessed in Lagos and some parts of the country, Ohanaeze would seek an appointment to see the president.

It was confirmed that the organisation plans to hold the meeting in Lagos before the end of the week.

According to the source, it was high time stakeholders in the Nigerian nation saw the people of South East as bonafide partners in building the nation, rather than a disgruntled and marginalised region.

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