We the Igbo Ekunie Initiative, IEI, comprising individuals in Nigeria and the Diaspora; disagrees with President Muhamadu Buhari that Nigerian unity is settled and not negotiable. We insist that Nigerian’s forced unity is not settled and remains negotiable by all the ethnic nationalities that make up the country. Evidently, the current overheating of the polity and tensions coupled with the various national upheavals and ethnic agitations show clearly that our unity should not be taken as settled.
Herdsmen frequently rampage and kill with impunity, yet there has not been any presidential directive or order to security agencies to stem the menace. Arewa youths issued their infamous quit notice for Igbos to leave the Northern parts of Nigeria and till date, nobody has been brought to book even when a warrant of arrest was issued and the culprits are still walking the streets free.
The first October deadline is fast approaching, the drums of war and acrimony are sounding louder with brutal ferocity to the chagrin and bewilderment of all concerned, yet the government considers it unwise to get her citizens to a round table.
Granted that people may have legitimate grievances, but till date, the federal government has failed to provide any avenue or channel for people to air and address these grievances.
We also note that the National Assembly and National Council of States are not the appropriate bodies for national discourse. While the national assembly makes laws, the National Council of States aids the execution of these laws and government policies.
No wonder these bodies have not been able to dampen the unprecedented level of discord tormenting our viability as a country. We must note that the national assembly got a rare chance when it was presented with the opportunity to devolve power and restructure the country but instead our senators and representatives chose to kill the chance on the altar of political expediency.
The president’s broadcast was a dismal and lacklustre performance. No new insight on moving the country forward was offered; the president simply repeated several lip serving speeches that no longer relate to our state of affairs.
Finally, we use this opportunity to call for an UN-supervised referendum amongst the component units with a view to resolving and finding a lasting solution to cure the persistent self-determination agitations which the Nigerian government has proved incapable of addressing.
Maazi Tochukwu Ezeoke
President Igbo Ekunie Initiative
Secretary Igbo Ekunie Initiative