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The immediate past President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief Nnia Nwodo, has accused the federal government of Nigeria of treating the Igbo race as second-class citizens in their own country.
Nwodo made the claim while delivering a paper on: ‘Nigeria’s Political and Economic Future – the Dangers We Can Avert’. He lamented the exclusion of the Igbo race in the security architecture of the country as well as other sensitive and strategic public positions.
His words: ‘We are grossly marginalised and treated by the federal government as second class citizens. No Igbo man, for instance, heads any security arm of the Nigeria Armed Forces.
‘Our area is the most heavily policed as if there was a deliberate policy to intimidate us and hold us down.
‘The brazen impunity in dealing with matters which concern the South East is provocative.”
‘We invest and contribute to the economic and social life of the communities where ever we live. We are proudly Christians but very accommodating of our brothers of other persuasions.’
The former Information Minister regretted that the militarization of the South-East zone and the high-handedness of the federal government in dealing with the zone were the reason for the growing disenchantment among youths in the zone.
‘This current approach makes it impossible for leaders in the South East to effectively contain the anger of their youths’.
He said that despite Nigeria’s harshness and unfriendly disposition towards Ndigbo, the race remains the most accommodating and enterprising and religious-tolerant tribe in the country.
‘We are the largest ethnic group other than the Indigenous tribe in any part of Nigeria. We invest and contribute to the economic and social life of the communities where ever we live. We are proudly Christians but very accommodating of our brothers of other persuasions’, Nwodo submitted.
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