- Group claims responsibility, says attack ordered by Nnamdi Kanu
Spanish police yesterday repelled an attack on the Minister of Transportation, Mr. Chibuike Amaechi by some Nigerians identified as members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) in Madrid.
The minister, who was on national assignment at a climate change event in the city, said those that attacked him outside the conference facility in Madrid were dressed in T-shirts, and face caps with the inscription of IPOB.
The IPOB, in a statement last night by its spokesperson, Emma Powerful, claimed responsibility for the foiled attack on the minister.
The minister said the Spanish police rescued him “unhurt from the misguided Nigerians.” Amaechi tweeted about the incident via his recognised twitter handle, @ChibuikeAmaechi.
“Some minutes ago, I was attacked by a few misguided Nigerians while on national assignment at a climate change event in Madrid, Spain. They were quickly repelled by the Spanish police before they could do any harm. I am fine. I was not hurt. Thanks for your support & prayers,” he tweeted.
IPOB in its statement said: “Yes, IPOB beat Amaechi the Transport Minister base on the standing order given by our leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu to reprimand those politicians who think they have arrived. IPOB Spain, precisely Madrid, beat Minister of Transport Chibuike Amaechi in Spain. The order was there before the attack on former Deputy Senate President Dr. Ike Ekweremadu in Nuremberg, Germany.
“IPOB is warning all those corrupt politicians who brought hardship to the people that we are waiting for them anywhere we meet or see them. We are telling the whole world why they must be dealt with because they are not sincere to the people, to the suffering citizens.
“We ask to retrace their steps otherwise IPOB in the diaspora will continue to treat their foolishness anywhere around the world.”
Meanwhile, the federal government, yesterday, condemned the attack on the minister, who was part of the federal government’s delegation to Madrid, Spain for the on-going climate change conference (COP 25).
Reacting to the incident, the Chairman/CEO Nigerians in Diaspora Commission, Abike Dabiri-Erewa, condemned “in its entirety, the attack on Nigeria’s Minister of Transportation, Rt. Hon. Chibuike R. Amaechi while on a national assignment in Madrid, Spain”.
She added: “Chibuike R. Amaechi who was attending an official event in Madrid was reportedly attacked by some Nigerians. We applaud the prompt intervention of the Nigerian Mission in Spain, as well as the Spanish police who ensured that the attacks did not escalate any further. Information indicates that the case is being handled by the Spanish Police.
“We appeal to Nigerians to be of good behaviour wherever they find themselves because such incidents ultimately tarnish the image of the country within the host country, with multiplier negative effects on Nigerians living in that country, who are law abiding and well behaved.”
Attacks on Nigerian government officials overseas is gradually becoming a tool used by some Nigerians to vent their anger on the government.
In August, this year, a former Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu was attacked in Nurnberg, Germany, where he went to attend the Second Annual Cultural Festival and Convention organised by Ndi-Igbo Germany.
Ekweremadu, who related his ordeal, via his twitter handle, @iamekweremdu, said: “I attended the Second Annual Cultural Festival and Convention organised by Ndi-Igbo Germany in Nurnberg today where I was billed to give a keynote address along with the President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief Nnia Nwodo, who, however could not make it eventually.
“I was given a resounding welcome by Ndigbo in Germany and everything went smoothly until some men, who identified themselves as IPOB members stormed the venue and began to complain about the killings in the South East, stressing that there would be no Igbo event at the venue.
“I tried to engage them, but when they became unruly, I had to leave the venue. The organisers also invited the police and I was accompanied out of the venue.
“Much as I am disappointed in their conduct, especially as I am one of the persons who have spoken up on justice for Ndigbo, the Python Dance, judicial killings in Igbo land and elsewhere both on the floor of the Senate and in my written and personal engagements with the Presidency and the media as well as rallied the South East Senate Caucus to secure Mazi Nnamdi Kanu’s release with Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe taking him on bail to douse tension in the South East, I nevertheless do not hold this to heart against them, for they know not what they do.”