Igbo chieftain denies reprisal attack on herdsmen

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    Fulani Herdsmen: The Niger State's scenario and the Army

    By KINGSLEY CHUKWUKA, Jos

    THE President General of Anambra Welfare Association in Plateau State, Bar. Achike Onochie has said that the Igbo nation did not carry a reprisal attack on the herdsmen invasion of southeast because Igbo is mindful of the unity of this country.

    Onochie stated this in Jos the Plateau State capital while responding to our correspondent on the attack by herdsmen in Ukpabi,Nimbo in Uzo-Uwani Local Government Area of Enugu State recently.

    He is also quoted as saying that the bitter experiences of the Civil War puts an average Igbo man in a position to trade with caution. Igbo is no longer easily given to annoyance that will bring it to collide with someone from another race.

    His words: “Igbos are peaceful in nature, the bitter experience of the civil war also informed our decision to always trade the part of caution. We are also commercial in nature with investment all over Nigeria and therefore cannot be easily cajoled in taking some certain decisions and most importantly, we are Christians predominantly”, he said.

    “We also did not avenge the attack because this agitation for the State of Biafra is till on, which has kept Nnamdi Kanu the leader of the group in detention, so we are still trading with caution”, he reiterated.

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    The Igbo Chieftain said nothing stop Igbo from regrouping but the Igbo nation is still watching the country as they are law abiding, saying that some certain crime are being attributed to the Igbo people, but not of this magnitude of taking the law into their hands, he said.

    In another reaction, a group known as Izu Umunna Cultural Association, in Jos, said the group is dismayed by the level of brigandage and carnage being unleashed on the people of South East by Fulani herdsmen. The association is particularly worried by the apparent poor response of security agencies to these atrocities and the near taciturnity exhibited by the Federal Government.

    The group said the action is a deliberate act more especially at this time when the National Assembly has begun deliberations on the National Grazing Reserves Commission, saying is apparently one of the grand designs to alienate and appropriate lands in the South East. The strategy they alleged, is to use Fulani herdsmen to coerce local farmers by ferocious force of arms to relinquish part of their farmland for grazing of their livestock as panacea for peace.

    Izu Umunna is concerned that the scenario as being played out in the legislature is to use the instrument of constitutional amendment to carve out large parts of land in the Middle Belt and Southern Nigeria and hand over to Fulani herdsmen, saying that with time, the Fulani will demand for the establishment of their chiefdom as they are doing in Kachia in Kaduna state where grazing reserve was carved out for them by the government of Northern Nigeria in the early 1960s.

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