Uwazuruike disowns sit-at-home order
Chief Ralph Uwazuruike, the leader of MASSOB and Biafra Independence Movement (BIM) said the two groups under him were not part of the call for sit-at-home. He was referring to the sit at home order that paralysed activities in the old Eastern region. The order spearheaded by IPOB leadership was a huge success from Port Harcourt to Aba to Umuahia and Owerri as government workers stay away from office, shops closed and markets on lock down.
Uwazuruike said: “The position of MASSOB and BIM under my watch is that we are not part of any sit-at-home order, all what I am aware is the week-long celebration to mark 18th anniversary of MASSOB and 50th anniversary of Biafra.
“Anybody talking about sit-at-home is on his own and I have nothing to tell anybody on such activity neither should any problem associated to it be attributed to me,’’ he said.
Both the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and Movement for Actualisation of Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) had declared May 30 a public holiday for their supporters to commemorate 50 years of the declaration of Biafra.
In Umuahia, workers in federal establishments and those of the Abia Government stayed away from their offices.
Abia State Secretariat Complex, public and private schools, markets and major supermarkets in the city were shut and transporters stayed off the roads.
Umuahia city centre, known as Isi-gate, was empty and quiet, while the shops in the area and the adjoining streets were all closed.
Many residents remained indoors, while children used the opportunity to play football on some streets.
The compliance was largely peaceful and no violence was reported across the states.
In Owerri, two major markets, Eke Onuwa and Relief Markets, remained closed, likewise shops on some major streets, Wetheral Road, and Mbaise Road.
The busy Douglas Road, which usually bustles with heavy traffic, was free as traders stayed home.
Banks, eateries and boutiques also closed business activities.