IYC warns Simon Ekpa: Ijaws not part of your Biafra Republic

The Ijaw Youth Council Worldwide has warned the self-proclaimed leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Simon Ekpa, against saying Jaws are part of his Biafra Republic.

The umbrella body of Ijaw youths issued the warning in a statement by its spokesman, Binebai Yerin Princewill.

The warning followed a video in which Ekpa, a lawyer based in Finland, said Ijaws are a part of the proposed Biafra State.

The statement by Ambassador Princewill said: “The attention of Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) Worldwide has been drawn to a strange video by one Simon Ekpa, who is from the eastern part of Nigeria, now masquerading as the leader of Biafra in exile. “In the said video posted on X, he tried to  establish  Ijaw territories as part of his imaginary Biafra state. 

“In the said video, Ekpa expressed the point that  Nigerian soldiers attacked his Biafra people and Biafra republic. He was simply referring to the Okuama attack in Ughelli South Local Government Area of Delta State on March 14, 2024 wherein 17 soldiers were killed and the subsequent onslaught carried out by the military on Igbomotoru and Peremabiri, Ijaw communities in Bayelsa State. 

“The fundamental claim the renegade Biafra nationalist is making is that both Okuama community in Delta and Igbomotoru  in Bayelsa state are part of his purported Biafran State. He thus threatened  to unleash mayhem on Nigerian soldiers to avenge the death of civilians who had lost their lives in the military onslaught.

“The attack on the soldiers has been condemned and it remains condemned just as the IYC  has also charged the military to go after only the criminals and not killing of innocent people which we have also condemned in Igbomotoru and Peremabiri. 

“For the purpose of clarity, the IYC is putting the records straight that the Ijaw struggle for a better living condition in Nigeria is older than the so-called Biafra agitation. 

“Our late Ijaw hero and foremost nationalist, late Major Isaac Adaka Boro, who is regarded as a champion of minority rights movement in Nigeria, declared the ‘Niger Delta Republic’ on February 23, 1966 a year before late Chief Odumegwu Ojukwu who was the then Governor of the Eastern Region declared the Biafra Republic on May 30, 1967.

“As Ijaw people, we are Nigerians, original occupants, and dwellers of the Niger Delta region. We  reiterate that no part of Niger Delta belongs to their so-called imaginary Biafra.

“The struggle of the Ijaw people is majorly in resource control and not a secessionist movement. We have our own struggles, and the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) also has their own separate struggle. The Ijaws are not part of their Biafran struggle and ideology.

“We are Ijaw people. We are Nigerians in the  Niger Delta. We don’t have any ties or whatever with the Biafran people and their agitation. 

“Finally, the IYC is using this medium to inform the Federal Government of Nigeria and the Nigerian military that all the areas mentioned are not part of Biafra and can never be part of Biafra. IYC will not allow any purported attack on the military in our territories.”

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