The south-east caucus in the national assembly yesterday rejected the branding of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) as a terrorist group.
The senators also called on IPOB to suspend its activities as they engage other lawmakers in seeking the solution to issues concerning the group and the region.
In a communique issued after their meeting with Saraki in Abuja, they said the terrorism tag could implicate innocent citizens in the south-east.
The communique, signed by Enyinna Abaribe, chairman of the caucus, reads: “We appreciate the efforts of the south-east governors and the leadership of Ohaneze Ndigbo in the handling of the agitations in the south-east with regards to the confrontations of the military with IPOB, especially in Abia state.
“We condemn all acts of terrorism. In the case of IPOB, we reject the branding of any organisation in Nigeria without cause or following due process where such cause do exist.
“We take this position because of the implication of such branding to innocent citizens from the area who maybe affected by the consequences. This branding, we believe, will foreclose any dialogue that will bring about a peaceful end to the activities of such group.
“We call on the leadership of Nigeria to look into the problem that feed never ending agitations by youths of the south-east and other geopolitical zones of the country.
“We condemn the use of hate speeches and remarks by anybody, as the dignity of humans must be respected at all times, even while dissenting on any issue.
“We affirm our support for the unity of Nigeria anchored on justice, equality and fair treatment on all parts of the country.”
This is coming on the same day the federal high court in Abuja granted an application filed by the federal government seeking the ban of IPOB as well as its declaration as a terrorist organisation.
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