A coalition of Igbo unions in Nigeria has voiced their reservations regarding the ongoing attempts to eject northerners from the cattle market in Umunneochi, Abia State. Under the leadership of Obinna John Okoroafor, this organization issued a statement expressing their concerns about the potential repercussions of these actions on Igbo traders, not only in the northern region but also in different parts of Nigeria.
The coalition stressed that if the issues faced by northern traders in the cattle market are not handled with care and consideration, it could set a dangerous precedent and potentially incite unrest and strife in other regions of Nigeria, ultimately affecting the Igbo population as well.
Moreover, the group made it clear that they disassociate themselves from the actions and statements made by Governor Alex Otti, deeming them “reckless” and potentially politically motivated. They alleged that the governor may be pursuing a political agenda through his choices in this matter.
The coalition strongly condemned the indiscriminate demolition of shops and residential homes and called on the authorities to promptly provide viable alternatives for the displaced northerners.
Governor Otti has been given a 48-hour ultimatum by the group, imploring him to reconsider his decisions in the interest of preserving goodwill and harmony among Nigerians.
According to the Igbo Union Coalition, “We remain Nigerians and are committed to the actualization of a peaceful and just environment for all Nigerians irrespective of ethnicity, religion, or tribe.”
The group also called upon security agencies to intensify their efforts in combating the menace of kidnapping and criminal activities in Umunneochi, Abia State, and across Nigeria.
The situation remains fluid, and the actions and responses of both local authorities and the Igbo Union Coalition will be closely monitored as this issue unfolds.