The Defence Headquarters on Friday said contrary to impression, the Independent People of Biafra (IPOB) has metamorphosed into a full militant terrorist organisation and has been terrorizing the unsuspecting members of public in the southeast region for selfish motives.
It said the brazen operations of IPOB in the south-east region informed the launch of “Operation Python Dance” in the south-east, to curb the perceived excesses of IPOB and its inclinations towards terrorism.
It said IPOB has increasingly been constituting security challenge in the entire south-east states as it metamorphosed from one stage of terror to the other while its activities was becoming more violent.
According to a statement by the Director Defence Information, Major General John Eneche, IPOB has suddenly formed a Biafra Secret Service as well as forming the Baifra National Guard while terrorizing unsuspecting members of the public in Igboland.
Eneche in the statement listed the excesses of IPOB to include, unauthorised blocking of public access roads, Extortion of money from innocent civilians at illegal road blocks, raising of a militia to possess and use of weapons (stones, molotov cocktails, machetes and broken bottles among others) on a military patrol on 10 September 2017, among others.
He said after due professional analysis and recent developments, it has become expedient, to notify the general public that; the claim by IPOB actors that the organization is non violent is not true.
Spokesman of the Defence Headquarters also listed physical confrontation of troops by Nnamdi Kanu and other IPOB actors at a check point on 11 September 2017 and the attempts to snatch their rifles as part of reasons the military moved into the south-east.
Other offence he listed against IPOB include attack on a military check point on 12 September 2017, at Isialangwa, where one IPOB actor attempted to snatch a female soldier’s rifle.
He said, “From the foregoing, the Armed Forces of Nigeria wishes to confirm to the general public that IPOB to all intents, plans and purposes as analysed, is a militant terrorist organisation.
“Therefore, parents and particularly unsuspecting residents of the South East and other Nigerians should advice their wards to desist from joining the group.
“The Defence Headquarters restates its commitment to handling all the security challenges in the Country and further assures all Nigerians of the protection of lives and property”