Ohanaeze said Clark’s stance was nothing short of parochial barbarism, satanic, and detrimental to national cohesion and unity.
The Ohanaeze Ndigbo has replied Niger Delta elder statesman, Edwin Clark, over his call to expel Abia, Imo, and Ondo States from the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
The apex Igbo socio-cultural organization slammed Clark over his stance.
According to Ohanaeze, Clark’s stance was nothing short of parochial barbarism, satanic, and detrimental to national cohesion and unity.
The elder statesman had urged President Bola Tinubu to expel Abia, Imo, and Ondo States from NDDC through an amendment of the 2000 Act establishing the commission.
The leader of the Pan Niger Delta Forum, PANDEF, noted that the inclusion of Abia, Imo, and Ondo States into NDDC was a political aberration.
Responding to the call, factional Secretary-General of Ohanaeze, Okechukwu Isiguzoro, urged Tinubu to overlook and sweep Clark’s unhealthy “vituperation into the dustbin of history.”
He accused Clark of promoting ethnic bigotry, which “has no place in our diverse and multicultural society.”
A statement by Isiguzoro said: “Rather than engaging in divisive rhetoric and exclusionary tactics, Ohanaeze Ndigbo expected Chief Edwin Clark to advocate for the gazetting of former President Buhari’s recognition of the Old Anambra River Basins as oil-producing states. This recognition includes Anambra, Enugu, and Kogi States, which should be incorporated into the NDDC. By ignoring this crucial aspect, Chief Clark has displayed a blatant disregard for fairness and equity.
“Furthermore, considering the economic hardships caused by the removal of fuel subsidies, Ohanaeze Ndigbo strongly condemns Chief Clark’s views. We find his comments deeply disappointing and unacceptable, as they do not reflect the position of the Niger Delta region as a whole. Ethnic bigotry has no place in our nation’s discourse, and leaders like Chief Clark must work towards fostering unity and inclusivity rather than sowing seeds of division.
“Ohanaeze Ndigbo urges President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to rise above Chief Clark’s divisive rhetoric and reject his exclusionary stance. We call on President Tinubu to uphold the principles of fairness and equality by incorporating the Old Anambra River Basins into the NDDC. This step would not only rectify the historical injustices suffered by the Igbo people but also promote national integration, development, and unity.
“Ohanaeze Ndigbo remains committed to the pursuit of a united and prosperous Nigeria, where every ethnic group is accorded equal rights and opportunities. We will continue to advocate for the fair treatment of all regions and work towards a future characterized by harmony, understanding, and shared prosperity.”