|Ralph Uwazuruike, MASSOB Leader|
Ojukwu is expected to be buried on March 2.
The Chairman of the LOC, Mr. Dubem Obaze, said in Awka on Sunday that women with handbags would also not be allowed into the Alex Ekwueme Square, Awka where the ceremonies would take place for security reasons.
Although Obaze did not give any reason for the decision to bar MASSOB from the ceremonies, our correspondent learnt that the LOC feared some of the members of the group could attack some of the personalities invited from across the country.
He said only security agencies like the Police, Army, Navy, Nigeria Civil Defence and Security Corps and the Federal Road Safety Corps would provide security.
He said commercial motorcycle and rickshaw operators would also be barred from operating around the venue for the ceremonies.
Obaze said the decision to thoroughly search and check people to be allowed into the venue was informed by the security situation in the country.
He said all markets in Anambra and Enugu states would be shut on March 1, while markets across the country controlled by Ndigbo would be closed on March 2 in honour of Ojukwu.
The LOC chairman said there would be a public holiday in Anambra the day Ojukwu’s corpse would arrive from Enugu.
However, MASSOB’ Director of Information, Mr. Uchenna Madu, told our correspondent that irrespective of the ban on the movement from the activities in Awka, MASSOB would fully participate in burial programmes.
He said, “Most of these ceremonies are not mandatory. Every Igbo group will organise its own programmes in its own peculiar way.
“Some people are afraid that there will be a bloody confrontation between MASSOB and the security agencies. We expect the security agencies to behave maturely. Let’s jointly honour Ojukwu.
“We don’t want to make any trouble. We still love the security agencies despite the fact that they are oppressing us.”
LOC bars MASSOB from Ojukwu’s burialFebruary 27, 2012 by Emmanuel Obe, Awka
culled from punchng.com