Mike Odiegwu, Yenagoa
The Ijaw Youth Council (IYC), Central Zone, insisted that it would not allow the indigenous people of Biafra (IPOB) to hold its meeting anywhere in the state of Bayelsa.
It was concluded that the scheduled IPOB meeting in Yenagoa over the weekend could not be held because the IYC, led by Kennedy Olorogun, warned against it.
The IYC president threatened that anyone caught holding such a meeting in the state would be completely beaten.
Describing this meeting as a threat to the ijaw nation, Olorogun argued that the IPOB should restrict unrest activities to its zone.
Clarifying his position, Olorogun told the nation that the Ijaw people are stirring up against the federal government and pursuing it over the years.
He noted that, contrary to what some people claim, Ijaw is not part of the Biafran territory and will never participate in the activities of the IPOB.
He explained that the unrest had consequences, adding that the people of Ijaw had solved their problems without involving people putting pressure on Biafra.
Olorogun said that, following tips received by the IYC leadership, that IPOB members were preparing to arrive in Yenagoa for a meeting, he promptly informed security agencies.
He said that in addition to warning the IPOB against holding such a meeting, the IYC sent a team to suspicious locations and ensured that no part of the state was used for the meeting.
He said: “Ijaw's unrest against the Federal Government was born in the Kaiama Declaration. Since then, we have pursued these upheavals with all the consequences associated with them.
“We don't want to inherit another upheaval. Therefore, we warn the IPOB to stay away from Ijaw territory. We have said that it is innumerable that Ijaw is not part of the territory of Biafran. They must restrict their activities within their zone.
“We are calling on Igbo workers in our state to conduct their business and we also want them to warn their IPOB brothers to stay away from the state.
“Any group of Biafra caught in a meeting anywhere in the state of Bayelsa will be marked as a deliberate attempt to fight the Ijaw people in their home, and we will not tolerate this, but we will defend our territory with anything.
"We also ask that the people of Ijaw be vigilant and provide information if they notice this meeting on any day or anywhere in the state of Bayelsa."