Former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and 2021 Anambra governorship candidate, Professor Charles Soludo has submitted that the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) deserve to be heard.
According to Soludo, who is the candidate of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) for the November 6, 2021 polls, he has never hidden his position about the separatist group.
Soludo made his view known on Monday during the Anambra governorship election debate organized by Arise TV when he was asked by the presenters about his view on the activities of IPOB in the southeast.
The governorship candidate said though he believes in one Nigeria, the agitations of IPOB members can’t be shut down completely. He added that government has to dialogue with them and reach agreements.
He said: “Let me be clear, I am the only one on this podium who is very clear on IPOB agitations.
“I am a pan Africanist and a pan Nigerian. However, I am on record to have also said the IPOB deserves to be heard.
“These things were the ideas that the agitations cannot be shut down by a gun when my brother [Andy Uba] said that he has to find out he is living on the moon. All these years, you do not know what IPOB is agitating for.
“You know what they are agitating for. You are either for or against. For me, we need to have a dialogue, bring everybody to the table and discuss those specific issues that are the agitations and come out with an alternative view, and my alternative view is prosperity in Anambra and prosperity for Southeast.”
Meanwhile, the Northern Elders Forum (NEF) has called out the federal government over the recent violence that has engulfed the southeast region.
NEF, in a submission by its National Publicity Secretary, Hakeem Baba-Ahmed questioned the ability of the federal government to curb the violence.
Baba-Ahmed who read a political meaning into the development, accused the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) of being responsible for the violent attacks in the southeast adding that the North won’t be forced to support a presidential candidate from the region because of the violence.
While calling on IPOB to put an end to the violence, the NEF spokesperson argued that secession is not in the best interest of any region in Nigeria as the country is better together.
He pointed out that if the President Muhammadu Buhari government is unable to put an end to the crisis, the next government will do so.