Hours before the delivery of judgment on the presidential election petitions by the Tribunal sitting in Abuja, Ndigbo Lagos has called on security agencies to take proactive measures towards protecting the lives and properties of Igbo people after the ruling.
The leading socio-cultural group representing the interests of Ndigbo residing in Lagos expressed concern that the aftermath of the tribunal judgment could lead to unwarranted attacks with the people and their properties being the prime target.
The group in a statement signed by its President-General, Major General Obi Abel Umahi, said the tribunal proceedings in recent months had generated intense tension and apprehension within Nigeria, especially the Ndigbo community in Lagos.
The statement said that Ndigbo as peace-loving and law-abiding people urge all parties to “accept the outcome of the tribunal in good faith and explore lawful means to seek redress if necessary.” The Igbo group said it, however, cannot ignore the unfortunate history of targeting and victimization they have experienced in the aftermath of such events.
“The protection of lives and properties is the primary responsibility of the security agencies. We implore them to remain vigilant and proactive in safeguarding the lives and properties of every Nigerian citizen, especially Ndigbo, during this period of heightened vulnerability.
“We call on the relevant security agencies to deploy adequate personnel and resources to prevent any form of violence, intimidation, or harassment targeted at members of our community,” the group pleaded.
They called on political actors and their supporters “to exercise restraint and embrace peaceful means of expressing their grievances or celebrating their victories, as prescribed by the law.
“We must collectively reject any form of violence or incitement that can further inflame tensions and endanger lives.
“Finally, we call on leaders at all levels, community stakeholders, and well-meaning Nigerians to join us in advocating for peace, unity, and justice. We must work together to foster an inclusive society that protects the rights and lives of all its citizens regardless of their ethnicity.
“Ndigbo Lagos will continue to partner with relevant stakeholders and cooperate with the security agencies to promote a peaceful coexistence among all Nigerians within Lagos State and beyond.”
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The Presidential Election Petition Court sitting at the Court of Appeal complex Abuja has scheduled Wednesday, September 6 for delivery of judgment in the petitions filed by Presidential candidates of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, the Labour Party, Mr Peter Obi and the Allied People’s Movement (APM) challenging the outcome of the February 25 election in which President Bola Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress (APC), was declared winner.
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