Charles Nwoke, Awka, Nigeria
The weekly sit-at-home order in South-East suspended by the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB has resulted to a controversy among its members.
This is as some of the members accused IPOB leadership of sabotaging the secession movement.
It was gathered that some angry members of the group expressed disbelief that their leader Nnamdi Kanu knew about the suspension of the order which was generally observed in the whole region.
Contrary to an earlier statement issued by IPOB’s Media and Publicity Secretary, Emma Powerful, that its sit-at-home directive to the people of South East and South-South states was very important, another statement by the IPOB leader’s younger brother, Kanunta Kanu, stated that the planned sit-at-home order had been suspended.
Later, the counsel to the IPOB leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, Ifeanyi Ejiofor issued a statement confirming that Kanu approved the suspension of the sit-at-home.
On his part, Ejiofor alleged that the confusion among some IPOB members was due to the presence of some “marauder” in IPOB, who are not loyalists of Mazi Kanu.
He regretted the confusion among the members, saying that “In this critical moment, peace and discipline should be the ultimate guide. What we crave is your prayers only.”
In a statement, the IPOB on Thursday reiterated that Kanu was aware of the sit-at-home suspension.
It equally warned against attacks on the legal team, saying that Kanu was not misrepresented.
The IPOB statement read in part, “The Indigenous People of Biafra ably led by our great leader Nnamdi Kanu, has told those criticising and insulting the lead counsel of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Barrister Ifeanyi Ejiofor, to stop and see reason with us for suspending the Monday weekly sit-at-home.
“Some uninformed fellows and mischief makers have been insulting, criticizing and attacking Ifeanyi Ejiofor for giving his nod to the suspension of the Monday weekly sit-at-home. IPOB is also disappointed that despite our earlier explanations on the rationale behind our decision to suspend the Monday sit-At-home order, some fellows are still disparaging our lead counsel and our leadership over the decisions.
“We therefore, wish to advise all those playing the devil’s advocate to desist in their own interest and stop giving our enemies room to mock us. IPOB is a well structured and organised movement with clear cut hierarchical structure as well.
“Henceforth, IPOB will no longer take lightly any act of insubordination from anybody or from any quarter irrespective of ones status on our leader’s lawyers. They have not taken any action inimical to the struggle to warrant the embarrassing and undeserved insults from some uninformed folks.
“All the decisions so far taken were in the best interest of the struggle and in accordance with direct directive from our Leader who is very impressed with the actions and solidarity so far given and implemented by the leadership since his incarceration.
“Ifeanyi Ejiofor, remains IPOB’s lead counsel and our leader’s lead legal representative and our leader reposes strong confidence in his ability and capacity. As a trusted counsel, he has not betrayed or misrepresented his clients IPOB and Onyendu Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.
“There is no reason therefore, for anyone especially IPOB family members to reciprocate Ejiofor’s sacrifices with insults. The facts in the public domain evidences multiple attempts by the Nigeria security agencies to eliminate Ejiofor at all costs because they have failed to get him compromised.
“Instead of appreciating him for defending our leader at the risk of his own life, some mischief makers are trying to accuse him of sabotage. This is not only ridiculous but stupidity taken too far.
“We also wish to clarify that in IPOB, we have nothing or nobody known as autopilot. Anybody going by such title is not IPOB, and is flouting our rules. Anybody claiming to be such should immediately disengage before he is embarrassed.”