The Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, has said that the Thursday military raid of Orlu and Orsu Local Government Areas of Imo State marked the beginning of the second Nigeria/Biafra war.
IPOB which made the declaration in a press statement by its Media and Publicity Secretary Emma Powerful, said that Nigeria had officially declared war against Biafran by launching military raid on unarmed civilians.
The Military had on Thursday admitted launching land and air operations against operatives of Eastern Security Network, ESN, believed to be in the forests in Orlu and its environs.
IPOB argued that the military had no justification to launch attack on ESN, a mere vigilante group protecting the people of Eastern region against terrorists and killer herdsmen whereas bandits rampaging the country are untouched.
The pro-Biafra movement vowed to defend Biafran land against occupation by herders no matter the cost.
Biafran’s earlier attempt on self rule after series of attacks on Easterners resident in some Northern states led to a 30-month bloody civil war between 1967 and 1970.
IPOB said Biafrans had no option left than self defense as the world has kept mute despite complaints and petitions over unprovoked genocidal attacks by killer herdsmen and terrorists against indigenous people in Nigeria.
The statement read in part: ” We wish to bring to the attention of the whole world, that the Nigeria military has at last, brought war to Biafra land. Supported by other security agencies including police and the Department of State Services, DSS, they came with military jets, tanks and heavy war equipment against us.
“Yes, the second Nigeria/Biafra war has begun! It begun on Thursday, February 18, 2021 at Orlu in Imo State, Biafra land.
“The Nigeria military has simultaneously launched both land and air attacks on us. After the genocidal war of 1967-1970 in which they killed over 5 million innocent Biafrans, they have come again to bomb Biafrans under the pretext that they are hunting the gallant personnel of Eastern Security Network ESN guarding our forests against killer herdsmen and terrorists on rampage in our land.
“Days before the raid, they first abducted a synagogue priest, Mazi Egole and his house hold, branding them IPOB members. Then on February 16, they abducted Mrs NGOZI UMEADI who they learnt took care of those injured during the #EndSARS protest.
“Not done yet, they took Dr. Stephen Irochi of Multicare Hospital and some injured #EndSARS protesters from Obigbo receiving treatment at the hospital.
“The government which could not defend Biafrans against incessant unprovoked attacks against indigenous Nigerians has now mobilised its land and airforce against ESN patriotically and voluntarily doing the job that Nigeria security forces wickedly refused to do. The crime of ESN is defending locals against Fulani herdsmen.”
IPOB said scores of civilians had already been killed in the attack but vowed never to succumb.
“Orlu and its environs are now a theatre of war declared by the Nigeria Government against innocent Biafrans. Scores of innocent civilians have already fallen casualty! Orlu and its neighbouring Orsu LGAs have been under heavy bombardment by the Nigeria Airforce since yesterday, February 18, 2021.
“We have no choice but to defend our ancestral land. We have complained enough, written petitions but the world turned blind eyes.
“The media refused to give us audience. Nobody seems interested in our story but like the Jews we must look unto our God and courageously fight back like heroes. In the end Biafra will come!”
IPOB accused Gov. Hope Uzodima of supporting the military raid and threatened severe consequences for all those involved in the attack.
“Regrettably, this genocidal war against Biafrans has the endorsement of Hope Uzodima who the Fulani Janjaweed Government is using in its futile desperation to actualise its Fulanisation agenda. But he, his likes and their slavemasters will pay heavily for this!
“The world must hold Hope Uzodima and the Buhari-led Fulani-controlled federal government of Nigeria responsible for the ongoing genocidal war in Orlu and Orsu.”
IPOB accused the federal government of double standard for using brute force against peaceful agitators but negotiating with bandits and canvasing amnesty for them.
” The same hypocritical Nigeria military which could not trace or locate heavily-armed bandits and Fulani terrorists in the forests of Zamfara and other Northern States is now bombing ESN, a mere vigilante group.
“Miyetti Allah announced its nation wide security outfit and nobody bombed them till today. Amotekun was formed in the West and the tanks were not rolled out against them.
But now that Biafrans have announced our own vigilante group – ESN to protect our people against terrorists kidnapping, raping and slaughtering our people in our own ancestral land, all hell is let lose.
“But we promise disgrace to our enemies. They SHALL be shamefully defeated. The WAR has begun! We shall defend Biafra and we shall triumph!
“No inch of Biafra land will be taken by the Invaders. We have vowed never to relinquish any inch of Biafra ancestral land to Fulani herdsmen from Sahel. God of the Jews shall defend us against the enemies. This war will be different from the 1967 genocide!”
IPOB urged all Biafrans to be united in the defense of their ancestral land again invasion and occupation by herdsmen.
“May we therefore, remind Biafrans all over the world that that decisive moment has come when they must stand to be counted. We need to rise as one people no matter the tongue or ethnicity for we have a common destiny. We have all been marked for decimation but we must resist them.
“Nobody should erroneously think he is exempted from the wicked plots of our enemies. Even our treacherous political elite should know that the Fulani will not spare them after using them against their own people.
“Our people in the Nigeria military and other security agencies should also know that the enemies will reward them with death after using them to fight their kith and kin. We must stand united and fight for our children! Now is the time!”