Former governor of Anambra State, Mr. Peter Obi has informed the Federal Government that the use of force is not the solution to Biafra agitation, stressing that agitations are best resolved through dialogue.
This was as he called for the release of the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, Nnamdi Kanu and other detained Biafra activists.
The ex-governor stated this on Thursday while fielding questions from newsmen in Enugu, stressing that the release of the agitators will douse tension in the South-East and the South-South.
“I wish to appeal to the Federal Government to change its hardline posture on this issue and yield to the persistent clamour for the release of Kanu and other Biafran activists, to douse the tension in the country, especially in the South-East and South-South geo-political zones.
“The Federal Government should engage them in dialogue. Every agitation in the world is resolved through dialogue and not by means of force,” he said.
Obi recalled that he was among the first to advocate a political solution to the renewed Biafra agitation and expressed disappointment that the advice was yet to be heeded.
“This has been my consistent position and I remember making the same point when I spoke at an event organised in Enugu in February 2016 by Igbo Youth Movement,” he said.
He said the federal government, regardless of whatever reservations it may have about the Biafra agitation, should realise that Biafra agitators, like other citizens, have their fundamental rights of freedom of expression and assembly guaranteed by the Nigerian constitution.
“To the best of my knowledge, the agitation for Biafra is not violent and does not violate either the Nigerian constitution or international laws.
“I, therefore, condemn the use of force against the agitators,” he said, noting that Kanu and others have been granted bails in the past by courts of competent jurisdiction.
According to him, “He said it was a matter of regret that the federal government failed to use those judicial windows to free the detainees.
“The fact that they had been granted bails that were not obeyed makes it even more pertinent to set them free now.
“We are in a democratic regime and it is important that the rule of law should be obeyed no matter whose case is involved.”
The former governor also advocated the restructuring of Nigeria, saying it remains the only solution to various agitations and deep-seated anger that have consistently stoked tension and prevented Nigeria from moving forward.