By Ikeugonna Eleke
A coalition of 44 rights groups and civil society organisations based in Southern Nigeria have condemned the order of the Inspector General of Police, Usman Alkali Baba, to his men to deal with Biafra agitators.
The groups described the order as one that could embolden police officers to commit genocide in the South-east and South-south zones.
The groups stated this in a statement signed by their leaders, including the Board of Trustees Chairman of International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law (Intersociety), Mr Emeka Umeagbalasi, and made available to Fides in Awka, Anambra State.
In the statement titled; ”Turning The East Into a Society of beasts, barbarians, the groups said the order would lead to the untimely death of many young people in the zone, who would be killed extra-judicially by the police.
The IG, Baba Alkali had in response to attacks on police formations in the South-East and South-South ordered policemen not to spare Biafra agitators, who he accused of being behind the attack.
Part of the statement read: “We will not allow the Acting IGP and the country’s Armed Forces to turn Eastern Nigeria into A society of beasts and barbarians.
”The Coalition is therefore sensing and fearing that Eastern Nigeria is remotely designated by the Government of Nigeria and its security forces and justice agency as “a major threat to widely suspect the state jihad project” and therefore must be crushed under the cover of “anti ESN/IPOB operations”.
“Till today, Nigerian Government has failed to credibly prove that “IPOB/ESN” carried out the recent attacks in the two regions with fresh facts emerging and discrediting the Government’s claims.
“The Government of Imo State, for instance, has stated that “70% of over 400 citizens arrested over the recent mayhem in the state are not Igbo or citizens of the two regions.”
The groups wondered on what premise the IG ordered a clampdown on Biafra agitators, while urging him to withdraw the order.