Former Governor of Abia State, who now represents Abia Central in the Senate, Theodore Orji has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to have a conversation with the leadership of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafran to avoid trouble in the country.
Orji said this on Sunday, November 8, 2020, in an interview with journalists as part of activities to mark his 70th birthday celebration.
The senator said dialogue with IPOB members is one of the best ways to achieve peace in the South-East region, adding that the Igbo, which has been crying of marginalization deserved a listening ear rather than the use of force.
Orji said, “If there are dissident voices, the president should call them and discuss with them.about:blank
“He should find out the cause of their agitation and work out ways to address their grievances.
” He should see how he can bring them in and fully integrate them into the system.
“That is what will solve the problem of the country. Call the dissident voices to a conference.
“There is nothing bad in discussing with the IPOB. If you don’t discuss with them, they will continue to give you trouble.
“We can’t be happy when other regions have six states and we have five. It shows that we are marginalised and cheated. That is what is causing the agitation in the region.
“Some groups are agitating that the zone should be a country on its own. Others are demanding restructuring because it is glaring that the South-East is being marginalised.
“If you treat me fairly like you treat other persons and I’m convinced that you are sincere, I will not complain. It is when I look around me and I see that I am being marginalised and treated like a second-class citizen that would make people be agitating.”
Orji maintained that the South-East region remained marginalised being the only region with just five states. He added that the region with a major tribe is the only one that has not produced a President of Nigeria since 1999.