– Lai Mohammed insisted that IPOB is a terrorist group
– He expressed disappointment that the US does not agree
– He gave examples of when Kanu solicited for arms to fight Nigeria
In an interview on BBC Focus Africa on Wednesday, September 27, the minister said the utterances and acts of IPOB showed they were terrorists.
He said: ‘The acts and utterances of IPOB were acts and utterances of terrorists. For instance Nnamdi Kanu was caught on tape saying that they want Biafra and not peacefully but by force and that if they don’t get Biafra, Somalia will be a paradise with the kind of mayhem.”
“This is also the same man who opens a safe for arms and the same man who set up his own Biafra national gathering, his own Biafra secret service and the same man who actually attacked army formations.”
When asked about what he thought concerning the position of the US hat IPOB was not a terrorist group, Mohammed described it as unfortunate.
He said: “That’s very unfortunate Because if countries decide to pick and choose which organisations are terrorists and which are not bearing in mind that terrorism has no boundaries, I think what we should do is, every country should work together to ensure that terrorism does not strive.”
The presenter asked the minister why herdsmen were not labelled terrorists while IPOB where and he said:
’I think acts of terrorism should not be confused with terrorist acts.
“I just told you that when an organisation decides to set up its own parallel government; when an organisation openly solicits for arms all over the world; when an organisation has issued out its own passport and its own currency and there’s nothing wrong, … then it becomes a different thing.”
Finally, the presenter asked: ‘’Do you worry that IPOB can be driven underground, become a militarised militant because you declared them a terrorist organisation?”
Mohammed said: “Nigeria is so fragile that if we allow this kind of thing to go on and there are reprisal attacks on other parts of the country, the whole country will be endangered.”
Meanwhile, Chief John Nnia Nwodo, a veteran of the Biafran war and the leader of Ohaneze Ndigbo, the pan-Igbo socio-cultural organisation, said the independent state of Biafra is not in the best interest of Igbo youths who are clamouring for secession.
Nwodo, speaking in an interview with the BBC on Wednesday, September 27, said he does not think Igbo people should resurrect the concept of Biafra at this point in time.
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