Angry reactions have continued to trail Tuesday’s arrest of the Chief Executive, Innoson Group, Chief Innocent Chukwuma by officials of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.
Innocent Chukwuma, popularly known as Innoson, was whisked away by operatives of the anti-corruption commission from his Enugu residence on Tuesday.
In a statement made by the spokesman of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, Comrade Emma Powerful, he described the arrest as an attack on Ndigbo.
The Ohanaeze Youth Council also toed same line in a statement signed by Comrade Obinna Achionye, its National Vice president and the national secretary, Mazi Okwu Nnabuike.
The youths said, “We are concerned over the commando-like manner, with which the EFCC clamped down on the Patron of Igbo Youths worldwide without proper invitation; the arrest may cause another catastrophe in this festive season.
“This is the highest level of impunity against Igbo nation and another attempt to cripple economic fortunes of Ndigbo and the Igbo.
“There will be massive protests by Igbo youths and other ethnic nationalities youth groups in Enugu, Abuja and Lagos before the 31st December 2017 if the EFCC fails to release him unconditionally. The EFCC should be ready to arrest millions of igbo youths during the protest.
“The Ohanaeze Ndigbo Youth Council Worldwide calls on President Buhari to call Magu to order before it is too late; we e demand for the immediate and unconditional release of Chief Innocent Chukwuma, chairman Innoson Group of Companies; enough is enough.”
On its part, the IPOB said it condemns “in the strongest possible terms the recent and ongoing harassment of notable Biafran business men, especially those of Igbo extraction by the Nigerian Government and her security agencies.
“Not content with the economic emasculation of the Biafran territories through decades of punitive policies, the few successful businesses that made it against all odds like Chief Innocent Chukwuma the owner of Innoson Motors who is now being harassed and humiliated publicly by agencies headed by Northerners for three major reasons.
“This include ongoing policy of de-industrialisation of the East. Had Innoson sited his factory in Lagos or Kaduna, every possible line of credit would have been extended to him but due to the fact his company is located in Enugu, he must be chased down and destroyed. This hopefully is to serve as a deterrent to others who might be entertaining the idea of relocating their businesses to Biafraland.
“Politics of appeasement and sabotage of collective interest by Ohaneze Ndigbo, PANDEF and similar interest groups. Age long South East/South South political philosophy of cowardly acquiescence to the dictates of the North, regardless of the consequences on the psyche and well being of the masses, is a major motivator for government agencies, headed by Northerners, to destroy indigenous Biafran businessmen at will.
“Nigeria is guided by the knowledge that politicians from the two geo-political zones that make up Biafra are terrified of the mythical might of their Northern masters and will be prepared to condone every manner of evil against their own people.
“Ohaneze Ndigbo and South East governors are to blame for this major embarrassment and humiliation of the topmost entrepreneur in black Africa. What Innoson Motors has accomplished so far, no Indigenous business in Sub-Saharan Africa has been able to do.
“If Innoson Motors were owned by a Northern Hausa Fulani man, he would have been revered and idolised to high heavens. But because it is a business owned and run by a Biafran and equally sited in Biafraland, it must be destroyed.
“Since the emergence of this Buhari regime, Biafrans of Igbo extraction have been lurching from one persecution another. After Operation Python Dance which had the backing of Ohaneze Ndigbo leadership and South East governors, the Buhari regime has turned its attention to the destruction of economic interests in the South East starting with Innoson Motors, in the hope of frustrating the first indigenous automobile company in West Africa because he opened his factory in Igboland.
“The effect of this ongoing persecution of Innoson Motors Company is as a direct result of the impotency of Igbo leadership exemplified by Nwodo’s stewardship of Ohaneze Ndigbo.
“Today, the effects of the age long sabotage of public interest by the likes of Ohaneze Ndigbo and imposed political leadership have started manifesting negatively on our people. Arewa Consultative Forum, Northern Governors’ Forum and Arewa Caucuses in the National Assembly will never allow Dangote to be humiliated the same way Ohaneze, South East governors and Abuja based politicians allowed Chief Chukwuma to be so publicly insulted.
“We are warning those involved in the orchestrated campaign to frustrate Innoson Motors to desist from their evil act before it is too late.”