Leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu on Monday said only restructuring of Nigeria between now and October 1, 2017 would guarantee the holding of November governorship election in Anambra State.
Kanu spoke in Enugu at a brief event where he received awards from three Igbo groups, including the Eastern Consultative Assembly and the Igbo Students’ Association.
The IPOB leader, who was confronted by journalists over the reaction generated so far by his call for election boycott, boasted that unless the Federal Government restructures the country before October 2017, the world would be shocked with the fate that would befall the scheduled Anambra election.
He said, “There will be no election in Anambra State come November 2017 and going forward there won’t be any election until they give me date for a referendum.
“They know what to do; convene a meeting, I will send my rep, give us a date for referendum, that is the only way.
“In which part of this earth have you ever found a measure of self-determination to be equated to war except in Nigeria because the political leaders do not understand the difference between self determination and war?
“Self-determination does not mean hate speech; the status quo can no longer remain. Like my brother Evangelist Eliot Ugochukwu-Uko said, if on or before October 1 nothing happens in terms of substantial restructuring, then there won’t be any election; the people will support us.”
On oppositions to his call by the Ohanaeze Ndigbo and other Igbo leaders, Kanu said their stand makes no stand because “the people are with us; we have their support 100 percent and come Anambra, on the 18th of November 2017, the world will be amazed.
Earlier in a presentation termed “Enugu Declaration”, different Igbo groups at the event called on the government not to make further delay towards restructuring the country.
The declaration was signed by Dr Alfred Udokwu; South East Elders Union; Rev Fr John Odey, Eastern Consultative Assembly; Bishop Mike Ibenene, South East Christian Network; Chief (Mrs) Maria Okwor:Igbo Women Assembly; Evangelist Elliot Ugochukwu-Uko, Igbo Youth Movement, among others.
They noted that “the struggle by a tiny clique to sustain by all means, the status quo imposed on Nigeria by unelected soldiers, by issuing threats of war in the false hope that the 196 million Nigerians held down in unacceptable squallor, fear, helplessness and arrested development will be cowed by this threats of military action and therefore back down from the noble struggle to save Nigeria, through a peaceful restructuring is provocative and offensive.
“Their arrogance, and ruthlessness has no place in the 21st century. It can only lead to the death of Nigeria.
“Nigeria must be restructured if Nigeria is to survive, and egalitarianism, equity and merit-based system enthroned. Fiscal federalism and regional autonomy established through a new constitution affirmed at a referendum. This is the irreducible minimum.
“Those struggling to resist this desirable change that will save Nigeria, and grant every zone a sense of belonging, are hereby declared ENEMIES OF THE PEOPLE.
“Accordingly, we the oppressed masses of Eastern Nigeria, conscious of the fate of our children, reject in totality, the quite offensive arrogance of the opposers to restructuring, and hereby declare that we will not participate further in any elections whatsoever until Nigeria is restructured to true fiscal federalism anchored on regional autonomy.
“We restate that if genuine processes towards restructuring Nigeria are not embarked upon by the federal government on or before the 1st of October 2017, our people will find it extremely difficult to continue to participate in the Nigerian project.
The division in the land, the hate in the system and the apprehension in the air, all, confirm the urgency for a re engineering and reconstruction of the nation, we aver, that those who disagree, are not only enemies of the country, but also agents of destabilisation.
“That we affirm, with every sense of responsibility, that continuing to vote in elections in this dysfunctional land will be deepening the hole the country has fallen into. Moreover, we do not wish to enslave our children to a life of second class status.
“We will no longer vote in any elections whatsoever, until Nigeria is restructured. This is the demand, desire and decision of the masses of Eastern Nigeria.
“We, therefore, conclude, that apart from the political class and their structure (oti mpku),and the elite club who live in comfort zones, 99% of our people do not see any benefits of electing leaders the structure makes it impossible to hold accountable.
“The imposed unitary structure simply makes it impossible for the hapless electorate to choose their own leaders. Restructure now, or count us out of your elections.”