The Concerned Igbo Stakeholders Forum, on Saturday commended Igbo leaders for appealing to President Muhammadu Buhari for a political solution over the release of Mr Nnamdi Kanu, leader of proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that a group under the aegis of Highly Respected Igbo Greats, led by first Republic Parliamentarian and Minister of Aviation, Chief Mbazulike Amaechi, met with Buhari at State House, Abuja, on Friday.
The Leader of the group, Mr Chukwuma Okenwa, gave the commendation in Enugu while speaking to NAN on the importance of the meeting on the recent socio-economic and political developments in the South-East.
Okenwa said that the meeting had shown that there are still time-honoured elders that cared about the negative impact of the fall outs of Kanu’s trial and detention to the zone for about three months running.
According to him, the group – Highly Respected Igbo Greats – have given a clear direction that the South-East has leaders and people that can bear the sacrifice to pursue issues affecting the zone.
“We laud the Highly Respected Igbo Greats group and their leader High Chief Mbazulike Amaechi for the direction they have given to Kanu’s case.
“They have shown other regions that elders of the zone are genuinely concerned about the recent developments in the South-East.
“We also laud President Buhari for being magnanimous to schedule the meeting and as a wise leader promised to ‘consider the heavy demand made on him’.
“This shows that the meeting will definitely generate anticipated positive outcomes in the near future,” Okenwa said.
He said that political solution remains a more practical means to foster greater unity of the country as well as getting the proscribed IPOB members to the dialogue table to understand their grievances.
“The Presidency should consider the negative impact the issue of IPOB and Kanu have already caused the region going with the Monday Sit-at-Home proramme, otherwise known as Ghost Monday.
“We are losing collectively a whooping N20 billion (mostly people living in the region and some other Nigerians in other regions) each day there is sit-at-home in the region.
“There is gradual collapse of businesses in the region, schooling is collapsing and the issue of access to healthcare facilities on such sit-at-home days is difficult,” he said.