For Immediate Release November 5, 2020
A Call for National Rebirth Through Love, Peace and Unity
Ottawa, Canada: Igbos for a progressive Nigeria, IPAN, Diaspora Chapter, commiserates with our Nigerian brothers and sisters who lost their loved ones during the just concluded protests. We also commiserate with President Muhammadu Buhari who is the father of the nation. We ask that you all accept our condolence.
After our emergency meeting held in Ottawa, Canada, yesterday, concerning the situation of things at home in Nigeria, we frown at – and strongly condemn – the violence and carnage that besieged and threatened the fabrics that held our country together. We found it particularly heartbreaking that peaceful protests started by aggrieved youths were hijacked by hoodlums and turned into a national crisis. We also urge President Muhammadu Buhari to expediate the inquiry into the alleged shootings at unarmed protesters at Lekki Toll Gate by the Nigerian Army.
For avoidance of doubt, IPAN, both home and abroad, was very unequivocal in their support for the protests to end police brutality, and for a holistic police reform. However, we began to sense problems the moment the protests started encroaching on the rights of other law-abiding citizens.
It was very unfortunate that the fifth columnists came in the form of hoodlums, hijacked the whole process and caused untold pains to too many a family. Nevertheless, we did not lose the entire battle. We are aware that the president and his government have started a comprehensive approach to addressing all the issues raised for a better policing in Nigeria.
We feel that now is the time for national rebirth through love, peace and unity. We call for national healing. We encourage all Nigerians who have genuine cases to take them to the Judicial Panels of Inquiry set up in their states. Just as we call on the government to waste no time in offering befitting compensations to the victims of police brutality.
“On this note, we condemn every statement made and actions taken, especially by some Nigerians here abroad, inciting those at home to take up arms against fellow Nigerians. It is a height of irresponsibility and an ill-conceived thought from anyone who thinks that we will remain in foreign land forever. They forgot that if we burn Nigeria, not only that posterity will not be kind to us, the countries where we are currently residing will pour scorn on us and treat us like stateless people,” said Chima Reynolds, chairman IPAN in diaspora.
“No nation in the world has ever discovered their paths to greatness through war and violence. Rather, those highly respected nations have only achieved greatness through patriotism, constructive dialogue and national cohesion. That is why we are convinced that the various so-called leaders calling for violence are not speaking for the Ndigbo, neither are they speaking for the Housas, Yorubas, nor for any other tribe for that matter. Such people can only be speaking for their paymasters, therefore, should not be taken seriously,” continued the chairman.
“As we move towards a great future, everyone is encouraged, including the political class, to implore peace, unity, love and above all, patriotism in handling the affairs of our dear country. It is only through those qualities that we can achieve the great Nigeria that we passionately desire,” added Micheal, secretary of IPAN in diaspora.
Leader IPAN, Diaspora