Benjamin Nworie in Abakaliki
Contrary to allegations that the South-east Governorsâ€™ Forum met in Abakaliki, the Ebonyi State capital, where they allegedly accused federal government of brutality on Ndigbo, the governorsâ€™ forum noted that no such meeting took place, describing the allegations as unfounded and baseless.
The forum distanced itself from the rumours making the rounds alleging that the body met behind closed door where it accused the federal government of killing members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and other issues.
Reacting to a report credited to one Nwankpa Osita Okere alleging that the forum met in Abakaliki, where the governors accused the federal government of brutality against Ndigbo, the Chairman of the forum and Governor of Ebonyi State, Chief David Umahi, described the report as â€œtissues of lies from the pit of hell.â€
Umahi who spoke through his Chief Press Secretary, Emmanuel Uzor, described the report as nothing by the writerâ€™s imagination, adding that the report was craftily done to embarrass the forum and cause confusion between the governors of the zone and the federal government as part of efforts to thwart the peace process with the IPOB.
He accused the originators of the â€˜falsehoodâ€™ of trying to sabotage the peace process already in motion between the forum and leadership of the IPOB especially as it concerns the rebuilding process and way forward to achieving lasting peace in the zone.
According to the statement, â€œThe attention of the forum has been drawn to a report circulating in various social media platforms alleging that the South-east governors met behind closed doors at the Government House in Abakaliki where they reached a consensus and accused the federal government of killing members of IPOB.
â€œWhile it is our responsibility to protect the lives and property of our people including the IPOB, it is rather embarrassing to link the forum to whatever politics of bitterness in any part of the country.
â€œFirstly, the writer and his paymasters failed to meet up with the realities on ground as concerns the already initiated move between the governorsâ€™ forum and leader of IPOB, Nnamdi Kanu, reached during our last meeting in our secretariat in Enugu. It is therefore the wish of the forum to assure the public that the communiquÃ© raised during our last meeting with IPOB leadership still stands and anybody circulating any contrary report is the real enemy of Ndigbo and should be disregarded.â€
The statement further disclosed that there was no such meeting as reported by the agent, adding that Umahi whom he quoted as issuing the statement was not even in the country as he is outside the country on investment drive for the development of his state.
He said the forum is working in synergy with the federal government and other federating units towards economic and regional integration and development of the South-east region, and called on members of the public to disregard every attempt by amorphous groups to instigate crisis between the zone and the federal government.