Apex Igbo socio-cultural organization, Ohanaeze Ndigbo has come hard on the leadership of the Arewa Youths over their opposition to the unconditional release of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.
The Northern group spoke after a meeting between President Muhammadu Buhari and Igbo elders led by Chief Mbazulike Amaechi.
President of the Arewa Youth Consultative Forum, AYCF, Yerima Shettima, in an interview, had claimed that allowing Kanu to go unpunished would be harmful to Nigeria and the Federal Government.
However, in a statement issued by the President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Youth Council Worldwide, Mazi Nnabuike Okwu, he accused Shettima of playing politics with a very sensitive matter.
Okwu wondered why the “Arewa youths have never given such opposition to the release and reintegration of the so-called repentant Boko Haram terrorists, but were against the release of Nnamdi Kanu, a freedom fighter.”
He noted that, “we have consistently made it clear that Kanu is engaging in self-determination, which is recognized under the international law and conventions.
“The Biafra agitation is also undoubtedly being fueled by the ill-treatment of the Igbo in Nigeria, and till this point, there appears to have been no lessons learnt by those benefiting from this unjust nature of the country.
“This is why the Arewa youths will talk the way they did. One expects that they should be more concerned with the worsening activities of bandits and Boko Haram, than Nnamdi Kanu.”
The Igbo group urged President Buhari to “go ahead and honour the Igbo leaders in line with his promise during the visit.
“We are also urging the Governors and the South-East caucus of the National Assembly, led by Senator Ike Ekweremadu not to relent on their own efforts.
“The timely release of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu should be of utmost concern to every Igbo person, and our political, religious and traditional leaders must unite to accomplish that goal.”