In recent years, the issue of insecurity of lives and property in various parts of Nigeria has dominated the airwaves not only in Nigeria but across the globe. In the Northeast of Nigeria where Boko Haram had dug in for years, the Nigerian army has been battling the insurgents for years without success. In the Middle Belt of Nigeria and some other areas of Northern Nigeria, there have been reports of security breaches.
In the Western parts of Nigeria, the insecurity problems had compelled the western governors to set up a security apparatus known as “Operation Amotekun” that is designed to assist the Nigerian security forces in protecting the lives and property of the Nigerians living in Western parts of Nigeria.
In the Eastern parts of Nigeria, there have been serious breaches of security problems where lives and property have been wasted during which the perpetrators had not been stopped or brought to the book. The problems have gotten worse by the day in many areas of Nigeria necessitating the setting up of independent security apparatus such as Myetti-Allah (MACBAN) and Amotekun to mention a few in a number of areas in Nigeria, designed to assist in protecting lives and property in various areas of northern and western Nigeria.
One of the major responsibilities outlined in the Nigerian constitution for both the Federal and State governments of Nigeria, is that of the protection of lives and property of Nigerian citizens. On the state level, the governors serve among other responsibilities, as the chief security officers. At the state level, therefore, the governors are responsible for ensuring that lives and property of individuals living in their states are protected. The killings of innocent people and raping of women in a number of areas in Nigeria, particularly in Southern parts, Northeastern, and Middle Belt parts of Nigeria have reached a significant proportion that the security apparatus of Nigeria has been overwhelmed and unable to provide the much-needed protection.
World Igbo Congress has, agonizingly, followed the cycles of the unjustifiable killing of the Igbo starting from Kano in 1945 and in Jos in 1953. World Igbo Congress is worried
that, although the Igbo killings have in more recent times spiraled into vicious carnage depicting massacres, maiming, kidnapping, raping and all whatnots in the nooks and crannies of Igbo land, not even one culprit has EVER been apprehended or prosecuted. Nor has any event in the cycle ever been investigated. Consequently, all the talks about providing safety for our people for over seventy (70) decades have fallen flat as absurd.
Recently, and through various news media, we have come to learn about the Eastern Security Network (ESN) that is designed to provide additional security protection to the people living in southeastern parts of Nigeria. We have also learned that sequel to the successes of ESN, the southeastern governments have proposed a joint patrolling of Igbo land by the governments of the area. It is evident and significant that the banditry and extra-judicial killings of southeasterners has abated some since the emergence of the ESN.
On that note, the World Igbo Congress (WIC), at an emergency meeting of its Board of Directors and House of Delegates held on January 16, 2021 resolved to welcome the emergence of the Eastern Security Network (ESN), that is designed to provide an added security for the protection of lives and property to the entire people living in southeastern parts of Nigeria and supports the safety it is providing our people.
It called on the governments of Eastern Nigeria and all patriotic Igbo to adopt the ESN to ensure that the vicious and unchallenged cycles of killings of the Igbo and their folks are stopped, forthwith. The WIC considered the adoption of ESN by the governments a better approach than the proposed joint patrol which will, like the community policing before it, did not provide the needed security of life and property for the Igbo
World Igbo Congress has no affiliation to any political entity world-wide, but the organization holds sacred the sanctity of the life of every human being and as such, supports the mission of any entity that holds sacred the lives of innocent individuals living in any part of Nigeria whose lives are impacted on daily basis by the violent actions of bandits or terrorists. World Igbo Congress asserts that the Igbo and their neighbors of southeastern Nigeria have inalienable rights to existence, self-actualization and unfettered access to their lands and property devoid of incessant harassment.
Signed: Prof. Anthony Ejiofor, Board Chairman