Chukwudike Ndubeze, Awka
Anambra State Government has declared Monday, April 4, as a day for inter-denominational prayer in the state to end the violence and senseless killings associated with the Monday sit-at-home order initially issued by the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra, IPOB.
The proposed prayer according to a statement by the state government, will mark an end to the orgy of violence that is associated with the exercise both in the state and other parts of the zone.
The Indigenous Peoples of Biafra, IPOB, had in August 2021, ordered Monday sit-at-home to protest the arrest of its leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.
But following a public outcry against the exercise considered too harsh in different quarters, the group later reversed itself.
However, despite the group’s cancellation of the initial order, its enforcement had lingered, resulting in unprecedented killings, abductions and burning of property of innocent citizens.
In a statement jointly signed by the Anambra State Government, traditional rulers, Bishops, and delivered at a one-day peace building and security dialogue, at the Women Development Centre, Awka, on Saturday, the parties jointly said the conclusion of the prayer would mark and end to every Monday ritual in the state.
The statement made available to Ikengaonline read in part: “It is the expectation of the joint body of Government, Traditional Rulers and Bishops that the conclusion of the prayer session shall mark the end of sit-at home in Anambra State in particular and the South-East region in general.
“We declare Monday, April 4th, 2022, as a day of prayer for peace for Igboland.”
According to the statement, the prayer will take place at 11am on Monday in all churches and prayer houses across the region.
To nip the problem in the bud and stop the agitations of the people, the statement called for the unconditional release of IPOB leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.
It also urged all parties and non-state actors to engage in constructive and continuous dialogue for a sustainable solution to overcome the security challenge in the region.
The statement further called on “all criminal elements masquerading as working under instruction of IPOB or ESN to cease and desist from further acts of violence and criminality.”
Continuing, the statement announced readiness of the State Government to recognize and reintegrate repented criminals into the affairs of the state and urged other hoodlums still hiding at various camps to sheath their swords and embrace peace to escape the wrath of the law.
It further announced that a “Truth Reconciliation Commission will be inaugurated in the state and would be saddled with the responsibility of conducting enquiry into the remote and immediate causes of the agitations, documentations and examination of circumstances surrounding the killings in the South-East and recommending solutions to it.”