Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, the President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, has expressed deep sorrow over the ongoing violence in the South-East region of Nigeria and called for an immediate end to the crisis. The octogenarian leader stated that he feels a profound sense of loss each time a life is taken due to the violence and asserted that he is willing to make any sacrifice, even laying down his own life, to bring peace to the region.
Speaking on Saturday evening during a press conference about the upcoming 2023 Igbo Day celebration on September 28 and 29, which included a church service at the Cathedral Church of Good Shepherd in Enugu, Chief Iwuanyanwu emphasized his commitment to pursuing a peaceful resolution to the situation. He stated, “I’ll take a kinetic approach that will require the cooperation of everybody. I’ll talk peace. I am ready to lay down my life to see that there is peace in Igboland.”
He further pledged to travel to various places, including Finland, to seek assistance in restoring peace to the South-East. He highlighted the profound sadness he experiences every time he learns of another death in the region, underscoring the urgency of ending the violence.
Chief Iwuanyanwu identified unemployment and hunger as contributing factors to the crisis in the South-East and called on the government to provide economic opportunities for the region’s youth. He acknowledged that some individuals turn to criminal activities due to economic hardship and unemployment, emphasizing the importance of addressing these root causes.
He appealed to the Federal Government to empower the people of the South-East by providing economic opportunities rather than relying on kinetic approaches. He stressed that the region seeks opportunities for its people to aspire and become self-reliant. Additionally, Chief Iwuanyanwu called for improvements in infrastructure, including enhanced rail lines and increased access to European airlines, to boost economic development in the South-East.
In his passionate plea for peace and economic empowerment, Chief Iwuanyanwu highlighted the importance of ending the violence in the South-East and fostering opportunities for the region’s residents to improve their lives and contribute positively to the nation.