Ekpa is the styled prime minister of Biafran Republican Government in Exile. He succeeded Nnamdi Kanu as leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, but had since fallen apart with Kanu and IPOB over allegations of not taking orders from Kanu as well as declaring incessant sit-at-home orders in South-East.
Although Kanu had disowned Ekpa in his handwritten letter made public on July 24 in Enugu through his special counsel, Barr Aloy Ejimakor, sit-at-home has persisted, especially on Mondays which was originally declared by IPOB to protest non-release of Kanu from detention.
EU’s national president, Charles Anike, told THE WHISTLER in Enugu that IPOB had been hijacked.
According to him, “What we have is a situation where a well-intended advocacy protest of the group, targeted towards securing the release of its leader, who has been unlawfully incarcerated by the Nigerian government, has been hijacked. The IPOB members could not coordinate themselves, which warranted some criminal elements to hijack the programme and turned it into means for terrorising and looting.
“The terrorists who disguise themselves as freedom fighters have already crippled the economy of the Southeast.
“The major blame goes to the IPOB who claimed to have trained and armed security known as the Eastern Security Network, but couldn’t confront and stop splinter groups who are not only faking and misrepresenting them but, worst still, killing and inflicting various degrees of pains on the same people they claim to be fighting their course.”
Anike advised the federal government to obey the Court of Appeal’s ruling in October last year, which discharged and acquitted Kanu.
In his words, “If the Buhari government had complied, and released the IPOB leader, the issue of sit-at-home order would have for long been a thing of the past.
“Also South-East governments should unite and work for the extradition of Mr Simon Ekpa, who obviously had sabotaged IPOB and had been proven to be responsible for the terrorists’ activities and unlawful enforcement of the sit-at-home orders in Southeast and its environs.”