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Opinion (23/12/2020): Eastern Security Network: An Advisory To Nnamdi Kanu – By Steve Osuji

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WHO DO YOU SEEK TO PROTECT?: It seemed like one of such bluster and empty propaganda until I saw a video: a single file of ill-clad armed men clowning about in a cassava farm. A voice over says it’s men of the Eastern Security Network(ESN) now ready to defend the southeast.
They were about to do what the cowardly governors wouldn’t do, the narrator proclaims.
And we ask, who does Nnamdi Kanu and his IPOB seek to protect? When was a referendum conducted to decide that Ndigbo would raise arms to defend ourselves?
Did Kanu and his group think through the fallout and consequences of this action?
Can Kanu possibly have a proper assessment of the security situation in Igboland from his foreign abode? Who did Kanu consult before this resort to arms considering that Ndigbo would be victims of the ensuing violent conflict in their domain and homeland?
Igboland is the most peaceful part of the country today so what is the real motive for this drastic rush for arms?
Are you prepared to take on the behemoth?
Why would we return to the route of the Biafra war in which the protagonists were driven by ego and megalomania instead of commonsense?
You seemed not to have learned anything from the Biafran war as you have continued to stoke the embers of hatred and division.
It’s true that the Buhari presidency has dealt a bad hand to Ndigbo, but it’s a short, passing phase. Besides, we are Igbo, we don’t act on impulse like excitable children!
Take notice that: ESN DOESN’T HAVE THE SUPPORT OF NDIGBO.

STRATEGIC ERRORS: It was sheer recklessness to have formed the so-called Biafra Security Network (BSN), the other time. It was needless propaganda move without basis or substance. It merely drew the ire of the federal government and broughr death and destruction on numerous Igbo youths. Have you accounted for those fatalities?
You recently sanctioned needless gathering of your members in Enugu, causing the death of countless Igbo youths in the hands of FG goons. Yet again, have you given account of the Enugu killings?
At the EndSARS protest, you invoked unnecessary opprobrium on the Igbo living in the West of Nigeria by your reckless comments. It took so much effort by the Ohaneze and well-meaning Igbo leaders to douse the ensuing conflagration. Was that comment necessary?
What happened at Obigbo (Oyigbo) in Rivers State? Who stoked and roused the latent hatred that we know is deep-seated in our so-called brothers in Rivers State?
How many Igbo youths were cut down in that Obigbo massacre?
What is the worth of Igbo properties/businesses destroyed in Obigbo? Do you know? Does anyone care? Is there an inquiry into that mini genocide? Can you give account?

FOREST ARMY OR GUERRILLA FIGHTERS: There you go again, you have gathered a few misguided and jobless youths, brainwashed them, kitted them in some drab combat fatigues and armed them with rifles.
One hundred of them, perhaps 500… you make an infantile propaganda video and broadcast it to the whole world.
And voila, ESN is born somewhere in the forest of Anambra! What naivety, what folly!?
How do you hope to go about this in stark repudiation of LGA authorities, State governors and the federal government?
Your ESN, if it’s not a shard of propaganda, is dead on arrival (DOD).
At best, all those boys would soon end up in the dungeon; worse we may have another cheap massacre on our hands!
Take heed that there’s no hiding place for them in the southeast.

GOOD CAUSE, WRONG METHOD/MOTIVE: As this column has admonished several times, you fight a good cause but you apply a wrong method.
First, Igbo don’t want another war, we don’t need to go war to prove any point. At least not on our soil. Igbo remains the most prosperous and peaceful part of the country even in this calamitous Buhari era.
Yes, there are occasional skirmishes with Fulani herders in Igboland yet it is still insignificant compared to cases in the core north, middlebelt and even southwest. So what really is the motive for raising arms against the government of the day?
Why do you insist on invoking violence and fatalities on Igbo people and Igboland by deploying genocidal propaganda?
Would you come home to lead the war or are you gonna be merchandising arms and raking in billions from the comfort of your foreign crib?
If your motive is to save and rescue Ndigbo, goodness knows we are not in any grave danger as you paint it…

WHAT NDIGBO WANT: Ndigbo desire a chance to lead Nigeria from Aso Rock in 2023.
Ndigbo want a RESTRUCTURED and well-governed Nigeria.
Ndigbo do not seek Biafra but rather, we want a Nigeria run under the fine tenets of rule of law, equity and justice to all regardless of tribe or tongue.
Igbo are not a hegemonic and irridentist people. Nay, we love to compete on the bases of merit and equal opportunity to all.
Yes, there is something wrong with the current leadership but no, there’s nothing wrong with Nigeria.

THE NEW EMPEROR: The other day you declared a fatwa on our revered leader, Chief Nnia Nwodo, chairman of Ohaneze Ndigbo. What temerity? You have no locus yet and you deign to dispense power and authority.
You insult and malign sitting governors with abandon; you show no aorta of respect to our leaders and monarchs… you exhibit this streak of despotism while you lay claim to no empire yet. We shudder to think what might be should you manage to foist your authority over us.
You forget that Igbo are free-spirited Republicans – we cannot tolerate nary monarchs not to speak of emperors.

FAREWELL TO ARMS: On a final note, we advise once again that you have made your point. In fact, you have won the heart and soul of Ndigbo. Time has come to rethink the ‘struggle’. For your good and for the good of Ndigbo.
You must intellectualise the cause rather than take to arms.
An armed struggle is what it is: WAR! You are definitely not ready… Ndigbo do not want war. Take heed that you may stand alone when the guns begin to boom. Be guided!

– Osuji is a respected journalist

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