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The Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) has called for calm over alleged killings of Northerners in Rivers and Abia states, even as they urged the federal government to ask the various state governments to set up commissions of inquiry into the recent killings.
The forum in a statement issued to journalists in Kaduna and signed by ACF National Publicity Secretary, Emmanuel Yawe, said it received a report from the chairman of ACF in Rivers State, Alhaji Ibrahim Umar Tundunwada on behalf of the northerners in the South that their people living in the Rivers and Abia states have been held hostage by members of the banned Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and urged President Muhammadu Buhari to save their lives.
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He said in the report, it was alleged that about 30 northerners have been killed by IPOB members while 50 buses, trailers and trucks belonging to northerners in the states have been destroyed.
Yawe, however, quoted Tudunwada as commending the Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, for banning the activities of IPOB in the state but observed that the problem was beyond Wike and the state government.
He added that northerners who survived the IPOB onslaught were living in perpetual fear as “the members have threatened to come and finish them”.
“The security agencies here have done their best but there is a limit to what they can do to protect us,” the statement read.
The ACF headquarters in Kaduna said the report from Rivers State had warned northerners planning to visit the state to suspend such plans for now and urged President Buhari to take special security measures to protect them especially since they have been living in peace with their compatriots until the #EndSARS demonstrations started.
When contacted, the ACF chairman in Rivers, Alhaji Tundunwada, confirmed the report, noting that the casualty figures had increased from the 30 earlier sent to the ACF headquarters.
He explained that they have evidence to prove the atrocities committed on them.
While calling on northern governors to engage their colleagues in the South on the need to treat northerners with fairness and justice.
“We want our people to be compensated. We have lost more lives in the recent incident than any region or tribe and we have all the evidences to show that our people were killed and our goods and properties destroyed,” he stated.
Similarly, the leader of Northern community in Rivers State, Alhaji Musa Saidu said that about 15 Hausa residents in Rivers state were killed by the hoodlums.
Alhaji Musa Saidu who spoke with our reporter in Port Harcourt on Monday said the remains of those killed were buried on Friday and Sunday at Onne Trailer Park in Eleme Local Government Area.
When contacted Rivers State Police Command Public Relation Officer, Nnamdi Omoni said that he was not aware of the incident.
Meanwhile, Rivers state governor, Nyesom Wike, has charged the 23 council chairmen and youths in the state to fish members of the proscribed IPOB in the state.
Governor Wike has also warned that any council chairman that allows IPOB members to hold processions and hoist its flag within their jurisdiction in Rivers State, risk sack.