Some residents of Anambra State have claimed that the sit-at-home order by the Indigenous People of Biafra was emasculating the economy of Eastern Nigeria, thereby impoverishing the people.
Ngozi Nwaude, a community leader in Enugwu-Ukwu, Njikoka Local Government Area in Awka, the state capital, called on leaders of the group on Monday to adopt a persuasive approach to their social mobilisation campaign.
She said by enforcing the sit-at-home order through the instrument of fear and intimidation, IPOB had become the enemy of many residents of the area.
Mrs Nwaude said it was unfortunate that a group that claimed to be involved in emancipation of the people would take actions that would inflict pain on the same populace, adding that IPOB was causing panic and hardship for travellers.
“I have to reschedule my flight to another date because I could not find my way to Asaba Airport,” she said.
Mrs Grace Anagor, a petty trader, said that the directive had turned to “a joke taken too far” and that was damaging people’s sources of livelihood.
She said the worst hit were the poor and elderly, urging all parties concerned to embrace dialogue for the sake of the common people.
Another person, Ugochukwu Okigbo, a transporter, described the situation as hopeless, saying it posed an economic threat to daily income earners.
He described his journey from Asaba to Awka as “horrible’’, adding that he once spent 12 hours on the journey that should last just some hours.
The IPOB had claimed its directive was in solidarity with its leader, Nnamdi Kanu, who is facing terrorism among other charges.