By Abimbola Ogunnaike
The Ohanaeze Ndigbo has called on the Igbo to participate in the forthcoming national population census wherever they are residing in Nigeria.
Ohanaeze’s call is contrary to the one made by the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, that Igbos should return to the South East for the forthcoming national census.
IPOB in its directive said the census would be used as a mock referendum for Biafra.
However, the Secretary-General of the apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Okechukwu Isiguzoro, in an Easter message to Igbo people, said the ethnic group should participate effectively in the census wherever they are located.
A statement issued by Isiguzoro on Sunday, 9 April, 2023, reads partly: “Ndigbo should remain wherever they are and participate effectively in the forthcoming national census.
“The National Population Commission, NPC, must include religion and ethnicity as part of the data to be captured during the enumeration since it is in line with the wishes of the majority of Nigerians today who appreciate the importance of such data in our national life.”
Isiguzoro also urged security agents, IPOB, and the Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra, MASSOB, to work against insecurity in the South East.
“All stakeholders in the security of Ala-Igbo including our governors, traditional rulers, bishops/religious leaders, and most importantly, non-state actors such as IPOB, MASSOB, ESN, UGM, etc [must] work together to end insecurity in our homeland,” he added.