The Chief Whip of the Senate, Sen. Orji Kalu, has described the sit-at-home in the South-East, ordered by the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) as counter-productive
Kalu, in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Abuja, said that it is not the right thing to do as it would promote hardship.
According to him, billions of naira is lost due to the self-imposed lockdown in the South-East.
“I never believed in sit-at-home, because each day they do so, billions of naira is lost, and there are families that the only money they make is the one they make daily.
“Any day they don’t make daily money, they don’t feed.
“So, I don’t think it is the right thing to do at this time for our people, because you cannot punish the same people you say you want to protect,’’ Kalu said.
He said that his recent talks with Northern elders and South-West key political figures in Washington, USA, seeking amnesty for detained members of IPOB and Sunday Igboho, were intended to promote peace.
The former Abia governor, who was in the USA in the past three weeks, where he held meetings with top officials of the United Sates, said he would extend it to the United Kingdom.
According to him, the amnesty I am talking about is not only for IPOB, is also for Sunday Igboho, and all of them that are involved, so that the country can be stabilised.
“I pleaded with most of our elders in the North and in the South-West; we cannot continue to fight at all times.
“I am still pleading with them and the Federal Government to intervene so that we can have a peaceful country.
“A lot of insurgents and bandits have been granted amnesty.
“I believe in the unity of this country, and I believe this country is better of being in unity, so the best way we can get it is to make sure that IPOB and followers of Sunday Igboho are granted amnesty.
“There is need to call a round table, even without the Federal Government. This is what the elders can do and give the Federal Government for endorsement, so we can have peace in our country.
“If we continued this rancour, it wouldn’t augur well, because people are purchasing arms and they are not only being used for this struggle, they are used for kidnapping, banditry and other things, we don’t deserve this.
“I have talked to the USA officials and I will talk to United Kingdom officials when I go to the UK in few weeks, so we can find a common ground.
“This country can make the 5th largest economy in the next six years, so why do we want to derail it.
He commended President Muhammadu Buhari for visiting Imo recently and appealed to him to endeavour to visit more states. (NAN)