The Eastern Consultative Assembly (ECA) yesterday came down heavily on the Federal Government over the spate of killings and general insecurity in the country, saying it is either overwhelmed or complicit.
The group, which was reacting to the alleged rape and murder of a 67-year-old woman, Mrs Pat Ugwu in Nchatancha Nike community in Enugu State by Fulani herders last Wednesday, said Ndigbo have been pushed to the wall and now have no choice than to defend themselves or perish.
A statement yesterday by the Secretary-General of ECA, Evangelist Elliot Ugochukwu-Uko, warned that “the horrific brigandage of Fulani herders” in Igbo land could no longer be condoned or tolerated.
The statement read in part: “The brazen rape and murder of 67-year-old Mrs Pat Ugwu in her farm at Nchatancha Nike, Enugu State, two days ago is simply put, unpardonable and unacceptable.
“Traditional rulers, priests and community leaders seem preferred targets of choice these expansionist demons of death are schooled by their sponsors and masters to hunt.
“It has finally become clear that these Fulani warriors and their protectors are simply implementing a carefully choreographed jihad of intimidation and conquest.
“General Danjuma screamed that the military and security forces are protecting them. The killing of policemen by soldiers in Taraba State confirms that soldiers could be compromised; confessions of arrested culprits that helicopters drop guns and ammunition for them in the forest simply complete the horror script. We have been under siege for four years now.”
“The hapless communities now have no other choice than to defend themselves or perish. The days of endless endurance and era of trusting the security agencies to protect our people are over. The Fulani herders brought the war to our land as part of a larger agenda of vanquish and dominate. The ferocious incursion into our farmlands and homestead with rape, beheadings, amputations, and general terror is the age-old well-known trademark of these expansionist warriors for centuries. Our people are clearly in trouble.”
Ugochukwu-Uko noted further: “The obvious inability or deliberate lack of interest or both, by the government of the day to rein in these vermin has already resulted to lack of trust between our leaders and the masses who are incensed that politicians are not doing enough to protect them, as seen in the Nuremberg, Germany incident, where a former Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, was attacked.
“Is there a deliberate ploy to weaken our region by cleverly turning the masses upon our political leaders? The cloud is gathering; the rain may fall any day now. Those whose worldview is all about conquering and dominating others are about to set West Africa ablaze once more. We know the world is watching.”