The average Igbo businessman is not having the best of times because of the implication of the agitation for a sovereign state of Biafra by some people led by Nnamdi Kanu, the former governor of Abia state, Orji Uzor Kalu, has said.
Kalu added that the agitation for Biafra has adversely affected the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the south-eastern part of the country.
Voice of Ndigbo reports that the current agitation for a sovereign State of Biafra is being championed by Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).
According to the Nation, the former governor made the static confession when he met with members of the Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG) who had issued a quit notice to all Igbo people living in the northern region of the country.
Kalu revealed that the leader Nnamdi Kanu was not the only one talking about Biafra adding that since he had access to the other agitators, he would talk to them.
“It is an issue of great concern to the region; the young people on the street do not know the damage the Biafra agitation does to the GDP of the region.
“The GDP of the area has gone down grossly; I am an entrepreneur and I know it.
“Cameroon, Chad, Niger and others used to buy goods from Aba; now how many of them still go there?
“We resolved this issue when I was the governor of Abia; I resolved it with Ralph Uwazulike and he listened; we will speak with Nnamdi Kanu and he will listen,” he said noting that there is strength in diversity.
“Nigeria needs to restructure economically and other wise. Many states cannot pay salaries.
“We need to put more money on capital projects; I recommend 25 per cent for recurrent and 75 per cent for capital.
“If the federal and state governments had invested in agriculture, the North should be making about 150 billion dollars from agriculture yearly.
“This is the only country that traverses from Atlantic Ocean to Sahara desert; some people are asking God to give them just one; we have to keep the country united,” he added.
While commending Kalu, the chairman of CNG, Shettima Yerima, said he had been engaging with Kalu through telephone since the quit notice issue came up.
He noted that since the threat was issued lot of things have changed.
“The public might think probably this is the first time we are meeting; certainly no. We’ve been talking on phone ever since this issue of ultimatum came.
“He (Kalu) has been engaging us in talking until today that we agreed to honour his invitation and to also speak to the public.
“His worries and concern was basically on the issue of how do we maintain the unity of this country in line with the present situation of things in the country.
“It is only those who are blind or ignorant that will say the unity of this country is not being threatened.
“It has been threatened, but you have prominent Nigerians, people like him who have shown a lot of concern and worried over the situation,” he said.
Voice of Ndigbo earlier reported that the Arewa youths finally made U-turn from the three months quit notice it issued to Igbos to leave the north before October 1.
The group led by its chairman, Alhaji Shettima Yerima made the pledge in Abuja on Tuesday August 1 while paying a courtesy visit to the former governor of Abia state, Dr. Orji Kalu.