A former presidential candidate, Kingsley Moghalu, has urged the Federal Government to dialogue with secessionists and believes addressing the root causes of their agitations will help in dousing tensions in the West African nation.
Moghalu made the call on Wednesday as a guest on a monitored Channels Television programme. He also believes secessionist agitators feel marginalised and are seeking justice.
“I think that the government should be able to invite, whether it is IPOB or Sunday Igboho, all the secessionists; invite them to the table,” the former Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) boss noted.
The Nigerian government had in 2017 proscribed the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB), the group spearheading agitations for the creation of an independent Biafra nation but Moghalu has faulted the move, insisting instead, that the reasons for their actions should be looked into.
While he admitted that IPOB and other agitators may be addressing their challenges in a wrong way, he argued that tagging them as terrorists is not the way to tackle the issue.
“They are essentially political agitators. You can call them terrorists. That is your own prerogative but we know what terrorism means in reality. Boko Haram are terrorists. We know that,” the economist and lawyer added.
“When people begin political agitations and we very easily throw terrorism at them just because they are mouthing off and speaking in a language that nobody likes or insulting their fellow citizens. That is their way of handling this type of thing.
“Can we address the agitations? Don’t be afraid to address the core reasons behind the agitation because they are crying out for justice. They feel marginalised. What is wrong with addressing those issues?”