The Indigenous People of Biafra has said it wants a referendum to determine if its members still want to be a part of Nigeria while denying allegations that it attacked security operatives in the South-East and South-South regions.
IPOB is leading a movement of people largely of Igbo descent seeking to split from Nigeria over years of marginalisation, oppression and rights violations.
Emma Powerful, the group’s spokesperson, in a statement said the allegations that IPOB members carry arms and is attacking security agents was a lie merely targeted at giving the Department of State Services an excuse to go after its members.
The statement reads, “We are not armed and have no plans to pick up arms. But should we decide to go into arms struggle which is not an option on the table, it will not be a secret affair. We won’t depend on arms collected from any security agent to defend Biafra. That is childish and an insult to IPOB.
“Their latest lie is the allegation that IPOB is responsible for the purported attacks on security operatives in South-East and South-South. We find it amusing how these unscrupulous elements without any contact address would think they can come to limelight via untenable allegations against a globally recognized peaceful group like IPOB.
“We knew when and how the DSS recruited them to launch a verbal attack against IPOB and its leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu. But we want to inform them that IPOB is properly rooted and cannot be moved by false allegation and propaganda.
“These irritants have sustained their unwarranted attacks on IPOB through fabricated and blatant lies, and cheap propaganda to impress their paymasters, the DSS.
“Assuming but not conceding to this blatant falsehood: How can an unarmed man attack a fully armed security agent and escape unhurt? Doesn’t it sound funny? What a shameful allegation! We know their aim: to discredit IPOB before the international community which is now interested in the matters we have raised concerning the atrocities perpetrated in Nigeria.
“Ordinarily we wouldn’t have bothered to dignify these detractors with a response as we have since known their stock in trade, but for the sake of the gullible ones and some innocent minds. There is no iota of truth in this fictitious claim. IPOB is not responsible for any attack against any security agent.
“Unfortunately for them, the era of propaganda and cheap blackmail is gone. Frivolous and concocted allegations designed by DSS and the government of Nigeria to blackmail IPOB can no longer stand. The world now knows better. IPOB’s non-violent ideology about the Biafra project is well known and cannot change. But the inalienable right of the oppressed to defend himself against the oppressor is not illegitimate.
“We are not armed and have no plans to pick up arms. But should we decide to go into arms struggle which is not an option on the table, it will not be a secret affair. We won’t depend on arms collected from any security agent to defend Biafra. That is childish and an insult to IPOB.
“All we need is Biafra, our own country which has been in existence before Britain created Nigeria and unequally lumped us together with these murderous Fulani that value cows above human lives. Marriage isn’t by force. We are tired of this bondage and want a referendum to determine our fate. Simple!
“We are monitoring and taking records of every single attack on our people and how Nigeria government and her security agencies abduct IPOB members and use chemicals and acid to murder many of our people in their custody to conceal evidence while those inconsequential and unreasonable groups claim to be Igbo group won’t see the barbaric massacre of our people.