Nigerian government has insisted that Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, and its leader, Nnamdi Kanu are terrorists.
Minister for Information, Lai Mohammed, said this during an interview on BBC Focus Africa on Wednesday,
He expressed regret that the United States does not share the same view with Nigeria about IPOB, a situation he described as “unfortunate”.
“The acts and utterances of IPOB were acts and utterances of terrorists. For instance Nnamdi Kanu was caught on tape saying that they want Biafra and not peacefully but by force and that if they don’t get Biafra, Somalia will be a paradise with the kind of mayhem.
“This is also the same man who opens a safe for arms and the same man who set up his own Biafra national gathering, his own Biafra secret service and the same man who actually attacked army formations”.
On US position, Lai Mohammed responded: “That’s very unfortunate; because if countries decide to pick and choose which organisations are terrorists and which are not bearing in mind that terrorism has no boundaries, I think what we should do is, every country should work together to ensure that terrorism does not strive.”
The BBC further asked Mohammed why more violent groups like armed herdsmen who have killed hundreds of people across Nigeria were not labelled terrorists.
‘’I think acts of terrorism should not be confused with terrorist acts,” the minister replied.
“I just told you that when an organisation decides to set up its own parallel government; when an organisation openly solicits for arms all over the world; when an organisation has issued out its own passport and its own currency and there’s nothing wrong…then it becomes a different thing.”
The presenter further asked, “Do you worry that IPOB can be driven underground, become a militarised militant because you declared them a terrorist organisation?”
Mohammed replied, “Nigeria is so fragile that if we allow this kind of thing to go on and there are reprisal attacks on other parts of the country, the whole country will be endangered.”