On Tuesday, April 7, 2015, Gary Enwo-Igariwey The President General of Ohaneze Ndigbo reacted to the death threats made by Oba Railwan Akiolu of Lagos State over the outcome of the forth coming Saturday, April 11, 2015 Gubernatorial and House of Assembly elections.
The Press Release goes thus:
Our attention has been drawn to the threat by the Oba of Lagos, Oba Rilwan Akiolu to the lives and properties of Ndiigbo living in Lagos if they failed to do his bidding on a preferred candidate in the Governorship elections coming up on Saturday the 11th of April 2015. In the said threat, the Oba of Lagos stated and I quote “On Saturday, if anyone of you goes against Ambode, who I picked, that is your end. If it does not happen within seven days, just know that I am a bastard and it is not my father who gave birth to me. By the grace of God, I am the owner of Lagos for the time being. This is an undivided chair. The palace belongs to the dead and those coming in the future. On Saturday, if anyone of you, I swear in the name of God, goes against my wish that Ambode will be the next governor of Lagos State, the person is going to die inside this water.”
We view this with serious concern especially coming from a first class traditional ruler in the country at a time when Nigerians are celebrating the peaceful conduct of the just concluded Presidential and National Assembly elections.
As a people, Ndiigbo live in all parts of the country and have respect for the culture and traditions of their host communities, including Lagos. We therefore have respect for the ancient heritage of the throne the Oba of Lagos occupies.
Lagos, by its special designation in the country, for over a century, has been home to all tribes from far and near. The Lagos we see today, is the product of the sweat of all Nigerians.
Democracy is about free choice based on interests. It is the right of every Nigerian to exercise that freedom of choice freely given by the Nigerian constitution. It is therefore the responsibility of all political parties in the country to pursue programs that address the interests of the electorate from which they make their choice. Ndiigbo and indeed all Nigerians should be free to make their choice.
OHANAEZE therefore directs Ndiigbo to be bold and courageous as always and vote massively for any candidate of their choice based on their conscience and interests without fear. As a people, Ndiigbo cannot and should not succumb to any form of intimidation from any quarters no matter the consequences especially in a place they have laboured with others to build. Ndiigbo are interested in building a Nation where all Nigerians are free to live and develop in any part of the country in harmony with other nationalities without discrimination.
We therefore wish to bring this threat to the notice of the Governor of Lagos State, the Lagos state Commissioner of police, the Inspector General of police, The Presidency and the International Community, including the International Criminal Court of Justice (ICC) to ensure the safety of life and properties of Ndiigbo, and indeed all Nigerians, at all times.