The apex socio-cultural Igbo group, Ohanaeze Ndigbo has berated a statement credited to the Chief of Army Staff, General Tukur Buratai, on his threat to impose a state of emergency on the South-East region if governors of the states allowed any further attack on security forces in the states.
Ohanaeze Ndigbo, in a statement made available to journalists in Enugu on Wednesday by Prince Uche Achi-Okpaga, the acting National Secretary & National Publicity Secretary, Ohanaeze Ndigbo., said the group condemned any forms of violence, however, it took exception to such open threat to governors of the region by the COAS who has no constitutional right to do so.
Ohanaeze further said it saw the army chief’s threat as provocative coming to a region that has relative peace when he had not done anything close to that to governors of the states in North Central, North West and North East that have become theatres of war.
Describing the threat as a glaring example of a “reckless impunity of public officers and a tacit manifestation of the vacuum in governance at the federal level,” Ohanaeze believes it was a confirmation of the authorities regard of the zone as conquered territory.
The statement read…
“While Ohanaeze Ndigbo decries violence in any form in the states, it takes particular exception to an open threat and warning to South East governors who, by the country’s constitution, are chief security officers of their states but are lame ducks in practice as all security commands come from Abuja.
“Ohanaeze Ndigbo finds it particularly provocative for General Buratai to issue such a warning to governors of the South East where relative peace prevails while he has not done the same in the North Central, North West and North East which have become theatres of war, and where army posts and bases have been subjected to incessant attacks by the Boko Haram, ISWA/ISIS, bandits and Fulani herdsmen, killing and maiming Nigerian soldiers.
“We also wonders where the army chief derives the power to issue such a threat which, under the country’s constitution, can only be carried out by the National Assembly on demand by the president.
“It is surprising that an army chief, who was watching as the governor of Katsina State was negotiating and taking pictures with armed bandits, would turn round to threaten to impose a state of emergency in states where unarmed citizens are agitating against the harsh and inhuman conditions they have been subjected to by their country”
“Ohanaeze Ndigbo also wonders where the army chief derives the power to issue such a threat which under the country’s constitution can only be carried out by the National Assembly on demand by the President.
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