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The Governor of Ebonyi State, Francis Nwifuru has urged the apex Igbo socio-cultural group, Ohaneze Ndigbo to work assiduously protect the image and value of Ndigbo from being tarnished by enemies.
Nwifuru who spoke through the state Commissioner for Information and State Orientation, Jude Okpor, gave the advice shortly after a meeting with the leadership of Ohaneze Ndigbo, in Abakaliki, capital of Ebonyi State.
Nwifuru who also reacted to the viral video portraying Ebonyi people as criminals in Anambra State, described it as a purported attempt to tarnish the corporate image of the state and Igbos in general.
He urged the leadership of Ohaneze to remain a leading umbrella of Unity and Progress in the southeast zone, adding that no Igbo man can attain the level of sainthood by tarnishing the image of his or her brother, but ‘would summarily dent the collective image of the Igbo nation’.
The Governor, Nwifuru, however, enjoined the leadership of the group to use their influence in extending the content of their slogan, “ONYE AGHANA NWANNEYA” in propagating the unity and oneness of the people of the zone.
He strongly condemned the criminal activities involving the Ebonyi people and maintained that the few hoodlums cannot be used to generalize Ebonyi people as criminals.
‘The use of social media in trying suspects, instead of following due process through a court of competent jurisdiction is uncalled for. The viral video will not only tarnish the image of Ebonyi people but the corporate image of the Igbos at large’ he stated.
Responding, the leader of the team and state president of the Ohaneze, Peter Mbam, assured the readiness of the group to partner with the state government to ensure that there is unity, peace and order in the five states of the eastern region.