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HOR Deputy Speaker: Southeast Region Incurs N4 Trillion Losses to Insecurity within 24 Months

Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr Benjamin Kalu has disclosed that the South East region lost over N4trn to insecurity in the last two years. Mr Kalu said this in his address at the annual all markets conference in Lagos.

His words: “This rising development has caused us a lot as we keep losing business investment to the constant sit-at-home. Insecurity remains a major problem in the east, the Yoruba are not our problem, we are our own problem in the east.

When you build 100 houses in Lagos, build at least 50 in your home. Migration can be reversed and people from Lagos can go to Igboland to buy goods.
“The constant killing, kidnapping, among others happening in the south east are not helping us. We need to readjust and arrange our home. This is not our identity.

Igbo are not known for violence. We must rise up with one voice and denounce this ugly situation in our land. I’m pained that we are no longer safe in the land that our forefathers gave us. We now sojourn in diaspora giving our children out in marriage in foreign land.”

On his part, the Chairman of United Nigeria Airlines, Prof. Okonkwo Obiora, said: “The support Igbo traders gave the governor in the March 2023 governorship election was not because he is Yoruba. It was rather because of the great competence he showed in piloting the affairs of the state during his first term. The traders also saw in him a detribalized leader who eschewed discriminatory and divisive politics which Lagos, a melting pot of ethnicities, requires to excel.

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“This is why some of us are very troubled by the occasional diatribe between the Yoruba and Igbo in Lagos state as is currently the case. It is not only unnecessary but also of no positive use for anyone to fan the embers of discord between the Yoruba and Igbo who have harmoniously co-existed in Lagos with other ethnic groups for well over a century.

“As has been established over several decades, the Igbo, as traders and business leaders, thrive very well in peaceful and accommodating environments. It is only when the environment is welcoming and inviting that we best express ourselves building new businesses and communities through self-help programs and human capacity development.

“One of such is the famed apprenticeship program which the American-Canadian TED Talks organization described as the greatest Venture Capital scheme ever. We invest in any place that we are welcome. Lagos State welcomes Igbo people and that is why we are able to help develop capacities and expand the economy.

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“However, that Lagos state welcomes the Igbo does not in any way suggest that the land called Lagos (Eko) belongs to the Igbo. Geographically, the Igbo people have their homelands. So, I will implore our Igbo brothers living and operating in Lagos that while we live here, do business and make a living here, we should not in any way suggest that Lagos is a no man’s land. It is erroneous and insulting to think so. Archeology tells us that even in lands where civilization has supplanted races, there are still people referred to as original inhabitants to those lands.

“Therefore, good neighbourliness will only work for our good. We must therefore respect the laws of the land while making ourselves available to serve in any capacity the states invite us to. It is only when we respect the laws of the land that the land respects and appreciates us. It is always a reciprocal relationship.”

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