After the news circulated the net that the UK government made a U-turn to recognize the Indigenous People Of Biafra, IPOB, as a terrorist organization. Just recently, the Uk government has come out to debunk such news, stating that the reports that circulated the net, stating that it has designated IPOB as a terrorist group is inaccurate and untrue.
When the false news circulated the internet, there was a statement signed by the Presidential spokesman, Garba Shehu who stated that such news is a welcome decision for Nigeria, as the UK government has finally proscribed IPOB as a terrorist group.
In his words; “Nigeria welcomes the decision by the United Kingdom to prescribe the indigenous people of Biafra (IPOB) as a terrorist group”.
Having heard such false reports being circulated on the net, the British high commissioner in Abuja clarified that such reporting was not the case. He however issued a public statement to clarify the whole issue.
The statement reads, “We are aware of inaccurate reporting circulating in the media and online that the UK Government has added the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) to the UK’s list of terrorist groups or organizations banned under UK law, these reports are untrue. The ‘Indigenous People of Biafra’ (IPOB) is not a proscribed organization in the UK.
“The inaccurate reporting relates to the 13 April 2022 publication by the UK Government of a revised Country Policy and Information note (CPIN) on separatist groups in SE Nigeria, including the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB). CPINs provide country of origin information (COI) and analysis of COI for use by UK Government decision-makers handling particular types of protection and human rights claims.
“All asylum and human rights claims made in the UK are considered on their facts by our obligations under the UN Refugee Convention and European Convention on Human Rights, taking into account relevant background country information and case law.
“The CPIN on separatist groups in the South East, including the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), provides a general assessment of risks faced by individuals belonging to those groups. These assessments are based on an analysis of publicly available country information obtained from a wide range of reliable sources including media outlets; UK and other governments; local, national, and international organizations; and non-government organizations.
“This CPIN also acknowledges that the Nigerian government has proscribed IPOB as a terrorist organization, some members of IPOB have reportedly used violence against the state and members of the public, and advises that persons who have committed human rights abuses must not be granted protection”.
It’s disappointing that the government of Nigeria is so hell-bent on peddling fake news concerning the indigenous people of Biafra, IPOB about them being a terrorist organization. This is the same government that once lamented that the great challenge facing the country is the issue of fake news and misinformation, only for them to be found guilty of doing the same act.
It is obvious that whenever a report suits the agenda of the government, regardless of how false it is, they embrace it with ecstasy. Such sponsored news about IPOB was orchestrated by mischief-makers. It’s indeed commendable that the UK released a statement to clarify such false reports being circulated.
There have been statements from some Nigerians, especially those residing in the South East region of Nigeria, stating that the Violence, Murder, Arson, and the likes been perpetrated in the South East are not carried out by IPOB members, but by some unscrupulous beings hired by the government to cause chaos in the region, to do everything possible to label IPOB and its members as a terrorist organization.
A critical examination of all the chaos in the South East, it makes no sense why IPOB members will want to kill their people which makes it very hard to believe. All they seem to be demanding from the government is for them to gain their freedom.
Meanwhile, the government has refused to declare the Fulani herdsmen militia as a terrorist group, despite them being responsible for hundreds of death and the destruction of properties in the country. This is a group that was named the fourth deadliest group in the world according to the 2014 Global terrorism index.
According to the government, they disclosed that they refused to name the Fulani herdsmen as a terrorist organization because their activities were criminal and not terror-related. Interesting!
Even if the government seems to have a strong hatred towards the members of IPOB and its leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, that doesn’t mean that they should go ahead to peddle false information about the group. It is a shame that they had to circulate the false news to suit their narrative.