The South East leaders who met in Enugu on Thursday have called on their youths to shun the destruction of government and private property and embrace peace.
The Chairman, South East Governors Forum, Mr David Umahi, made the call while briefing newsmen at the end of their meeting in Enugu.
Umahi admonished the youths to desist from destroying government and private property as the governors seek ways to remedy the recent vandalism of property by the ENDSARS protesters in the region.
“We sympathise with all the victims’ families, including the Police and other security agencies, as well as all those who lost their loved ones and other valuables in the recent disturbances.
“The South East leaders will engage our youths to ensure sustainable peace in the region and a glorious future for our children.
“Each state in the South East will set up a fund to assist the victims of the crisis, including the Police, the Army and other security agencies, as well as the civilians,’’ he said.
Umahi, who is the governor of Ebonyi, also assured that the state governors were committed to addressing the concerns of the youths that were peculiar to their various states.
He said that the South East governors will engage the Federal Government and their colleagues in other states to address other issues that were regional or national in nature.
“We advise all our youths that while the governors are working hard to meet their demands, the destruction of public/private property and attacks on security personnel and civilians will not be allowed to continue.
“The leaders, therefore, directed all Igbos both at home and in the diaspora to go about their lawful activities and not get involved in any form of unlawful protest or criminality.
“We pledge to protect all ethnic groups living in the South East and we thank our other colleague governors for protecting our people in their various jurisdictions,’’ Umahi said.
Those present at the meeting included Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State, Abia State Gov. Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu; Deputy Gov. of Anambra, Dr. Nkem Okeke, and Imo State Deputy Gov. Prof. Placid Njoku.
Others included the President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief Nnia Nwodo, Former Senate Dep. President, Ike Ekweremadu; as well as Senators Rochas Okorocha, Sam Egwu, and Uche Ekwunife.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Geoffrey Onyeama; Minister of State for Mines and Steel Development, Dr. Uchechukwu Ogah, Minister of State for the Environment, Mrs. Sharon Ikeazor; the Obi of Onitsha, His Royal Majesty Igwe Alfred Achebe, Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, as well as Amb. Mrs. Justina Eze. (NAN)