Ezekwesili had earlier called on Buhari to stop punishing the entire South East region for the actions of a few agitators.
Ezekwesili , a former Minister of Education, had earlier called on Buhari to stop punishing the entire South East region for the actions of a few agitators.
There have been reports of a forceful clampdown of members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) in Abia, by soldiers.
Ezekwesili also asked the President to desist from being a sectional leader and stop making enemies with regions that are perceived to be disloyal to him.
In his reaction, Shehu called on the former minister to rise above pettiness and stop politicising highly sensitive security issues.
The President’s spokesman also wondered why Ezekwesili kept quiet when Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and his members were harassing innocent Nigerians.
Shehu said “A prominent influencer like Dr. Oby has a moral and patriotic duty not to give ammunition to any violent group that seems determined to pursue its separatist agitation through reckless and destructive methods.
“While it is convenient for the civil society activist to condemn the military and the government of President Buhari, Mrs Ekekwesili didn’t find it appropriate, even once, to criticise the dangerous and violent propaganda being propagated by the IPOB leader, Nnamdi Kanu. Oby, as they call her, tweets on everything. Why was she silent on this one?”
“There is a deliberate sinister agenda by IPOB to provoke the soldiers into killing innocent people in retaliation so that Nnamdi Kanu would use the pictures of the victims for international propaganda by the accusing the government of ethnic cleansing against the Igbos with the sole purpose of gaining sympathy.
“A president who has put put the nation’s cash cows, the Central Bank and the Ministry of Petroleum in the hands of the Igbo; who has given four out of five states in the subregion senior cabinet posts in his administration, including Foreign Affairs; and Industry, Trade and Investment, and is constructing the Second Niger bridge after years of deceit and false starts cannot be called a hater of the Igbo,” Shehu added.
The President’s spokesman also said “If the Buhari administration could take tough action against the extremist religious groups in the northern parts of the country to preserve national security, it is ridiculous to accuse the President of sending soldiers to the Southeast because he hates the Igbos. The Federal Government under President Muhammadu Buhari respects all citizens and will ensure that they are safe and secure wherever they reside.”
Meanwhile, a group known as the Alaigbo Development Forum (ADF) has dragged President Buhari and the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai to court over the alleged invasion of the South-East.