Asaba Massacre: Igbo Deserve Apologies – Osita Chidoka
The governorship candidate of the United Progressive Party in the Anambra governorship election, Osita Chidoka, has asked the Federal Government to apologise to the Igbo race for the massacre of innocent civilians in Asaba, during the civil war.
Chidoka also demanded that the Nigerian Army should release the report of investigations into its conduct during the Operation Python Dance recently held in the South-East.
He spoke as victims of the Asaba Massacre commemorated the 50th anniversary of the incident, on Saturday.
Chidoka, a former minister of aviation, urged the Federal Government to use the occasion to heal wounds by issuing an official regret.
He spoke through the Director of Media, Osita Chidoka Campaign, Viola Ifeyinwa Okolie, in a statement on Saturday.
The UPP candidate said a soothing word from the Federal Government would pacify survivors and relatives of the deceased.
Chidoka was quoted as saying, “They are a peaceful, accommodating and forgiving people whose only demand has been a fairer union; a union founded on justice, equity and fairness, and where no man is oppressed or relegated.”
The former minister urged the military authorities to release the report of its investigation on alleged abuses and violation of the rights of citizens by security officials involved in the widely criticised Operation Python Dance in the South-East.
Chidoka urged the military to accelerate its inquest, make its findings public and mete out appropriate punishments to errant officers, while mechanisms should be put in place to end such violations.
The UPP candidate commended well-meaning Nigerians from other parts of the country who identified with the anniversary, including Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, and the Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Rev. Father Matthew Kukah.
He also called for the continued spirit of brotherliness among Nigerians, while assuring all of his commitment towards the pursuit of the interest of Igbo through institutionalised legal and legitimate means.