Listen to article
An Igbo group, under the aegis of Conference of Igbo Professionals Worldwide, has written President Muhammadu Buhari, frowning on the promotion of only one police officer from the South East region.
In a letter to the President, it sought a review of recent police promotions.
The group also alleged unfair treatment of the region in recruitment, appointments, projects location, others, asking the President and the National Assembly to urgently set up committee to unravel actions against the South East.
Recall that the Police Service Commission (PSC) on Friday promoted three Assistant Inspectors General of Police and one Commissioner to Deputy Inspectors General of Police during its 10th plenary meeting.
And the group alleged that like in the past recruitments, appointments, promotions and allocation of resources, the region was denied its rightful place in the exercise carried out by the Commission.
In the letter dated 26th, December, 2020 and titled, ‘unfair treatment of Ndigbo and urgent need to right the wrongs by Mr President”, the group alleged that out of the recent promotion of senior police officers, the South East was given one slot while some regions got over 12 slots.
The letter signed by the group’s National President, Prof. Patrick Kalu and National secretary, Dr Uche Mbaka, respectively, appealed to President Buhari and the National Assembly to not only set up a panel with a view to unraveling circumstances leading to unfair treatment of Igbo race in the country but also review the recent promotions of the police commission.
‘We wish to kindly draw your attention to the recent appointments made in the Nigeria Police Force by the Police Service Commission (PSC), under the chairmanship of the retired former Inspector General of Police, Musiliu Smith,’ the group’s letter said.
‘Recall that the Police Service Commission on Friday, December 18,2020,rose from its 10th plenary meeting with the promotion of 37 senior police officers to their next ranks.’
‘This action by the commission is highly commendable given that it would boost the morale of officers and men of the Force to serve their fatherland diligently and meritoriously.’
‘However, we are constrained to point out that the exercise which ordinarily would have been effected in line with the country’s policy of equity and fairness, was regrettably skewed towards some regions at the detriment of the South East.’
‘For instance, as observed by us,out of the figure mentioned earlier, the North West was apportioned 12 slots just as the North East was given 8 slots.’
‘The South West on the other had, got 7 while the South South got 5 in that order. The North Central geopolitical region was given 4 slots. We regret to say here that unlike the zones mentioned, the South East region only got 1 slot.’
‘This, to us, is the height of the ongoing desperate efforts of the current federal administration to completely alienate the Igbo race in the Nigeria project. This provocative action is condemnable and unacceptable to us.’
The group told the President that, ‘The PSC may have drawn its inspiration to carry out this wicked action against Ndigbo from what has been in place since the emergence of your administration.’
Listing the areas the Igbos were being marginalised in the nation’s scheme of things, the group insisted that the president must take urgent steps to “right the wrongs.”
‘These infractions included lopsided appointment of security chiefs; infrastructure deficit including roads, railway, and seaports; unfavourable allocations from the federal government; and concentration of interventions of development partners in other regions.’
‘Others are exclusion from commanding heights of the nation’s economy; delay in the passage of South East Development Commission Bill and flying the kite of the 2023 presidency.’
‘We call on you sir, to address the principle of federal character in the distribution of public resources and appointive positions, especially security chiefs.’
‘Also, we appeal to the National Assembly to immediately step in with a view to stopping these unfair treatments of Ndigbo in Nigeria. This it can do by first of all set up a committee to investigate the reason for these actions by the government.’
According to the group, “Addressing the lopsided appointments of security chiefs is paramount due to increasing insecurity in the South East region.”
‘We are threatened that given the current security architecture, a decision may be taken one day to eliminate all Igbo without their knowledge due to lack of representation,’ it said.
Going further, the group said: ‘The unfair treatments against us have continued to increase daily. We call on you sir, to re-write the wrongs meted against the Igbo ethnic nationality by your administration.’
“Like our mother sociocultural body, Ohaneze Ndigbo had observed on the action of the Police Service Commission on the recent appointments in the Police, we hasten to condemn this repeated denial of people of Igbo extraction in major appointments in its entirety. We feel this is not fair to a region that is at the forefront of Nigeria’s unity,” it added.
It regretted that:”Owing to widespread allegations and reports of exclusion of the citizens of South East from several important federal appointments including top security appointments since the emergence of your government, we had expected that certain steps aimed at righting the past wrongs could have been taken by now.”
‘Since you and your party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) have constantly denied hating the Igbo, we urge you to undertake certain actions aimed at convincing us that we have a place in the Nigeria project similar to other regions,’ it told the president.
‘We have an unwavering belief in the Nigeria project and feel strongly that we be accorded the same attention like others when it comes to issues of federal appointments. We deserve better life and fair treatment from our own country,’ it said.
It tasked the President to take actions that could deplete the ranks of Nnamdi Kanu’s followers, who it alleged, was brainwashing the youths of the zone to join in his inglorious activities, using the alleged unfair treatments of the Igbo race.
‘We recently observed that our fugitive son and founder of Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, was capitalising on these unfair treatments of Ndigbo in Nigeria to gain attention. He succeeded in recruiting reasonable number of followers by using some of these indices mentioned above to convince them.’
‘We vehemently rose against this act by Mr Kanu and called on our youths to denounce him and his activities. This has paid off as his ranks is being depleted considerably.’
‘We appeal to you sir, to take steps aimed at not giving credence to the inglorious activities of this nature by stopping all actions that can fuel ethnic and religious bigotry in the country. You were elected as president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and not any tribe or religion,’ it said.
It further said: ‘In the spirit of fair play, equity and justice, the Conference of Igbo Professionals Worldwide, appeals to you sir,to order a review of recent police promotion exercise with a view to correcting the imbalance observed in it.’
THE EASTERN UPDATES