By Lisa Iwu
The Ohanaeze Youth Council, OYC, has expressed solidarity with Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu over his recent controversial comment on ‘military takeover of government’.
The youth wing of Ohanaeze Ndigbo also warned that any attempt to intimidate the Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu over a contribution he made in the hallowed Red Chamber of the National Assembly, would be resisted by millions of Igbo youths.
In a statement issued Tuesday, signed by the OYC President General, Mazi Okechukwu Isiguzoro, they said Igbo youths would defend Ekweremadu with the last drop of their blood.
It could be recalled that Ekweremadu had, at Senate plenary, cautioned that Nigerians should be careful not to undermine democratic principles, as it was still possible for the military to capitalize on that.
His comments did not go down well with the military authorities, who immediately issued a statement, reprimanding the Senate number two man.
However, OYC said its members have followed with keen interest the controversies that have so far trailed a very honest statement made by the Distinguished President of the Senate, Chief Ike Ekweremadu, on the floor of the Senate.
The statement read further: “Without mincing words, all honest men and women in the country cannot feign ignorance over various abuses of the country’s laws by governments at various levels.
“Suffice it to say, therefore, that Ekweremadu merely stated the obvious by cautioning Nigerians not to take our much cherished democracy for granted.
“However, it is quite shocking that some enemies of democracy, the same kind of people Ekweremadu talked about have so misinterpreted his comments to mean that he is calling for a coup. What could be farther from the truth? Some mischief-makers have even gone to the extent of calling for his arrest.
“We, therefore, warn sternly that Igbo youths will not sit and watch some idle minds disparage Ekweremadu for no just cause.
“For those calling for his arrest, they should be prepared to arrest him alongside millions of Igbo youths who are ready to defend him.”
OYC further warned that any attempt to harass or prosecute Ekweremadu will lead to a civil disturbance that will have no control.
It maintained that Ekweremadu is a law abiding Senator, who chooses his words very carefully, adding that those calling for his arrest should channel such energy towards resolving the crisis in Benue and other parts of the middle belt.
“From this hour onwards, the Ohanaeze Youths in their millions will be guarding Ekweremadu. So, before they will touch him, they should first of all be prepared to take along millions of Igbo youths.”
He called on Ekweremadu to be calm, stressing “we are solidly behind him; he should remember that millions of Ohanaeze youths behind him are more than those against him.”