The group alleged that the traditional rulers collected money from Fulani herdsmen and allowed them to operate in the region without restriction.
A pro-Biafran group known as the Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) has accused traditional rulers in the South-East region of Nigeria for the indiscriminate attacks, kidnapping and killings in the region.
The National Director of Information of the group, Sunday Okereafor, who made the accusation during an interview with The Punch on Friday alleged that the traditional rulers collected money from Fulani herdsmen and allowed them to operate in the region without restriction.
The MASSOB spokesperson said, “They (monarchs) brought Fulani herdsmen to our land. The Fulani herdsmen gave them money to come into our land and they are all over in our bushes.
“I schooled in the North. Before a Fulani man will come into your community, they must first see the monarch. After seeing the monarch, they will start operating in your bushes.
“Formerly, they paid the monarchs N100,000. Now it is N500,000. You can imagine yourself, how can a monarch leave his community, his town for the city? Tell me what he will do there. The monarchs left our community down to the city. Now the Fulani herdsmen are approaching, kidnapping our bishops and our pastors and taking people hostage.”
According to Okereafor, the killings in the region would no longer be tolerated as no one group has a monopoly on violence.
He therefore warned the perpetrators, especially the Fulani herdsmen to desist from such wicked acts forthwith or be ready to leave the Southeast completely.
He said that “It is becoming unbearable. We are now calling the Muslims in the South-East to stop kidnapping and stop killing our people.
“It is not only them who knows how to kidnap and kill in the church. If these killings and kidnappings continue, their mosques will be attacked. They should stop insulting our clerics.
“Can we insult the Imam in Owerri, in Port Harcourt, Aba or Umuahia? It is not possible. But they (herdsmen) are here insulting our clerics and pilgrims and taking them hostage.
“So, we are telling the youths in the South-East to rise up now and search all the bushes in the South-East and chase them out of our land. So, the monarchs should be held responsible because they know how the Fulani come into our land. Formally, the Fulani don't stay in the bush. They patrol in the land and after that they return to where they come from. But this time around, they are living in our bushes.
“Every day by 2am you will see them patrolling our villages. They know all the corners and link roads of our villages. So any further attack or kidnap in our communities, our churches and clerics, we will know how to deal with them.
“They should not push us to the wall. We allowed them on our land because we are not violent. But they should not push us to the wall.”