IPOB’s terrorists are regrouping ahead of 2019 elections – Group ipob
The Independent Human Rights And Crime Monitoring Group, has disclosed that the proscribed terrorists of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) are regrouping, ahead of the 2019 elections.
It also hinted that in spite of the secession attempts and propaganda by IPOB, the people of the Southeast zone of Nigeria actually wanted a return of the military operation, codenamed Python Dance II, to the zone.
The NGO, through its Executive Director, Zineke Werigbelegha, on Tuesday in Port Harcourt, revealed that the situation in the Southeast had grown into proportion that would require concerted efforts to neutralise the threats.
It said: “The group commissioned an assessment of Operation Python Dance II, with a view to learning vital lessons that would help avoid identified shortcomings. The assessment was restricted to the Southeast geo-political zone of the country, where separatists of the defunct Biafra Republic are active.
The report confirmed that Operation Python Dance II was the most successful military operation in the Southeast till date.
“The Nigerian Army conducted Operation Python Dance in September 2016 as a training drill for troops, at a time the entire Southeast was reeling from a wave of crimes like kidnap for ransom, banditry, extortion and illicit drugs related crimes that were proving to be beyond the civil police.
“Separatist movements that were uncomfortable with what the operation could expose about their activities, mounted campaigns to discredit the exercise, with a strategy aimed at turning the populace against the army. It was later discovered that separatist groups like IPOB, Biafra Independent Movement (BIM), Biafra Zionist Movement (BZM) and their other variants were behind the mentioned crimes, with the proceeds used to finance their secessionist bid.
The successful conduct of Operation Python Dance restored peace and sense of security to the states in the Southeast, with indigenes of the five states of Abia, Imo, Anambra, Enugu and Ebonyi being able to freely travel home without apprehension.
“The Nigerian Army heeded the call by the populace with Operation Python Dance II, which came at a time when IPOB had become belligerent in its call for the break-up of Nigeria. However, Operation Python Dance II was able to dismantle the terror cells and infrastructure of IPOB and other groups that operated based on its ideology.
“Residents of the Southeast are asking that Operation Python Dance be sustained and turned into an annual exercise that will provide avenue to root out the criminals
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The group also revealed that as a retaliation for proscribing IPOB, members of the terrorist group were shopping for justification to disrupt elections in the Southeast next year, which it said must not be allowed, in order not to threaten the unity and corporate existence of Nigeria.
It called on the Nigerian army and the Federal Government to intensify efforts to dismantle the propaganda arm of IPOB, led by its spokesperson, Emma Powerful.