Traditional rulers of Igbo extraction, in the nineteen Northern States and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, have cautioned politicians in the country against hate speeches capable of adversely affecting the unity of the country.
The traditional rulers, who came together under the umbrella of ‘Association of Ndi Ezes in the 19 Northern States and Abuja’, stated this at the end of their meeting, at the Liberty Hotel, at Kubwa, Abuja.
In a communiqué, the traditional rulers harped on the need for politicians to be very careful in their utterances, especially in this period of electioneering.
In the communiqué, signed by Eze Udo, Dr Uche Egenti and Eze Udo Silas Chukwu Ajah, the association’s President and Secretary respectively, the rulers also canvassed support for the use of the Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs) and the Card Reader, for the March 28 and April 11 elections.
The communiqué read in part, “We, Ndieze Udos, being the grassroots leaders of the Igbo in Diaspora, should be prayerful, patriotic and pragmatic in our utterances, decisions and actions”.
It added that: “The injustice meted out on the Igbo people, in terms of political appointments, since 1999, when democracy evolved in Nigeria, is not only inhumane, but ungodly, as it is unconstitutional”.
It also pointed out that the concept of an Igbo man not being in the Security Council in the modern day Nigeria, is unacceptable.
The communique added: “The drum beat of war that is going around the Nigerian nation, is not acceptable and we plead to all those that are investing in bombs to reinvest in brains and ask the Igbo man of the ripple effects, in the past civil war, because we the Igbo people are not ready to go to war again”.
The traditional rulers added: “We insist that Permanent Voter Cards be used to lend credibility to the general election.
“Card Reader machine should be used, in the general election, for decency”, they added.
They maintained that “all the political parties, youth leaders, religious leaders and security officers should sign a peace accord.”
Speaking after the meeting, President of the association, Dr. Egenti, said there were over 88 Eze Udos from different states and local governments in the 19 states of the Northern Nigeria and Abuja, who attended the meeting.
He pointed out that the concern of the association was to see that this year’s general election went smoothly. “We are all out to support whatever will make the elections peaceful, credible, transparent, free and fair. This is the reason we have thrown our weight behind the clamour by the overwhelming majority of Nigerian people, that both the PVC and Card Reader should be used for the conduct of these elections”, he said.