The Catholic Bishop of Enugu Diocese, Calistus Onaga, has faulted the sit-at-home order by the Indigenous People of Biafra (Biafra), stating that the such act based of civil disobedience, is counter productive to the economy of the South-East.
Mr Onaga said the order was tasking the Igbos in a way that even former secessionist leader, Chukwuemeka Odimegwu Ojukwu, did not do, though he used his father’s wealth to prosecute the quest for independence.
“The various leaders of ethnic agitations and interest groups should take care not to employ methods to contradict their intentions in any way or try to reduce their intentions.
“They should take examples from those who have done that in the past.
Martin Luther king who died for the Blacks did not punish those he was fighting for.
“Even Emeka Odumegwu Ojukwu used his father’s wealth to look for our independence, yet he did not come back to demand a return from any of us,” the cleric cautioned.
Mr Onaga made the remarks on Sunday at the opening ceremony of the second Plenary Meeting of the Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria (CBCN) in Enugu.
He said the intentions of the sit-at-home order were not clearly stated and was capable of causing more hardship to the people, if not suspended.
The Catholic Bishop queried the intimidatory tactics of the agitators, asking “When you make us afraid, those you feel you are protecting, what will happen when you get the independence?
“This part of the world is known for business, this part of the world is known for education and you tell us to sit-at-home, doing what?
“What of the parents, who will need to sell their goods in order to train their children, you tell them to sit-at-home. Is that the way we can progress,” he further queried.
On the other hand, Mr Onaga also bemoaned the lopsidedness adopted by Nigeria’s security forces in arresting criminals in the country, suggesting that there was regional discrimination in the handling security threats.
The Enugu diocesan bishop wondered why the security operatives could travel to other countries to arrest Nigerians, yet they could not arrest those terrorising farmers in the forest.
In his message to the bishops’ conference, Enugu State Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi thanked the bishops for their unceasing prayers, wise counsel, support and solidarity.
Mr Ugwuanyi assured the clerics that his administration would continue to serve the state with the fear of God adding that the spiritual event would herald blessings for the people and government of the state.
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