The Igbo Ekunie Initiative has strongly condemned the launch of Python dance 3 in the Southeast by the Nigerian army describing it as an act of aggression, discrimination, double standards and a declaration of war against the people of the East by the Muhammadu Buhari administration.
The group also alleged that the intended operation is in continuation of Muhammadu Buhari’s declared “Apartheid policies” of hate, discrimination and war against people of the Southeast “that is all too evident in his administration”.
The initiative in a statement signed by its President, Maazi Tochukwu Ezeoke and Secretary, Lawrence Nwobu on Tuesday, further noted that the reasons for the launch of another millitary operation was “spurious” considering the killings by Fulani herdsmen in several parts of the nation where the military has “deliberately failed to intervene”.
The group lamented that previous military operations in the Southeast, notably python dance 1 and python dance 2 left in its wake hundreds of extra judicial executions, disappearances, massive extortion of the populace and mass graves including the recent mass grave of IPOB members “executed in cold blood by cowardly members of the Nigerian army in the course of conducting python dance 2 in Ogwe autonomous community in Asa Ukwa West LGA of Abia state”.
The group stressed that the Python dance operations serve no purpose other than to kill, extort and humiliate citizens of the southeast.
The group maintained that the South East is a peaceful region and called on the millitary to follow democratic guiding it’s operation.
The statement read in part “Having carefully considered the spurious reasons given for the intended launch of yet another military operation in the Southeast, a peaceful region and ipso facto having considered the state of the nation In regards to mass we declare as follows;
“That any further launch of operation Python dance and or military operations in the southeast, a peaceful region where there is neither war nor insurgency, particularly in circumstances where the military is yet to launch any real operation in areas where Fulani herdsmen have slaughtered thousands of Nigerians nor ever arrested any of such terrorist Fulani herdsmen would be considered a further
“That Nigeria is a democracy and military operations must be guided by enabling acts of parliament as prescribed by section 217 and 218 of the 1999 constitution, which provides only three grounds or special circumstances where the military can be deployed as follows:
“For the defence of Nigeria from external aggression.
“For the maintenance of the territorial integrity and securing the borders of Nigeria from violation on land, sea and air.
“For suppressing insurrection and acting in aid of civil authorities to restore order when called upon to do so by the president “subject to such conditions as may be prescribed by an Act of the National assembly.”
“Therefore other than a declaration of war, any military operation in the Southeast would be an illegality; a grave constitutional violation that borders on high treason.
“That, these cowardly acts and egregious crimes against humanity perpetrated against unarmed and innocent civilians in the Southeast were committed in a democracy and by the same army that has refused to confront or arrest murderous Fulani herdsmen and that has even been reported to aid and abet Fulani terrorists as they carry out a murderous campaign of genocide across the country.
“In light of all of the above; we submit, that having not met any conditions for the constitution of military operations as prescribed by the constitution, we hereby use this medium to serve notice, that the people of the Southeast, totally and unequivocally reject any further deployment of troops or commencement of military operations in a peaceful region under any name or guise.
“Since no one or group has a monopoly of violence, we warn that any further military operations may have catastrophic consequences and may engender hitherto nonexistent insurgencies for which the federal government would stand indicted” the group stated