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Former Governor of Anambra State and Senator representing Anambra Central Senatorial District, Dr. Chris Nwabueze Ngige has addressed the media on the alleged deportation of ndi Igbo from Lagos State. Senator Ngige stated this in a
letter to Aka Ikenga a socio cultural group which had requested that he take up the matter with the Governor of Lagos State. Below are the contents of his letter and attached annexes( communication between Lagos State and Anambra governments)
I write in respect of the above subject matter, which Aka Ikenga at its 28th July, 2013 general meeting which I was privileged to attend as Special Guest of Honour, requested me to take up with the Lagos State Government. I am glad to inform you that I was received in audience the day after, by His Excellency; Governor Raji Babatunde Fashola( SAN) the Governor of Lagos State and the issue was discussed exhaustively.
At the meeting, the Lagos State Governor disclosed that contrary to claims, the issue in question has nothing to do with deportation, but a Social Welfare Intervention, involving several homeless destitutes and other psychiatric cases roaming the streets and some living under the bridges in Lagos. These people were taken in and treated and cared for by the Lagos State Government free of charge and thereafter needed to be reintegrated with their families. After this rehabilitation the affected people disclosed their true identities and the disclosure revealed that 14 of them were from Anambra State. For the purpose of reintegration with their kith and kin back home( most of them had nobody in Lagos) and for further social support and care, Lagos State Government communicated the Anambra State Government as well as other affected state governments to come forward and identify and take over their people. (see letter as annex 1) On receipt of this communication, Anambra State Government requested for the identities of those claiming to be from the state( see letter as annex 2).
The list was promptly supplied to them by Lagos State for immediate and urgent action ( see letter as annex 3). With further contact and pressure Anambra State Government preferred that the handing over be done at bridge head and Lagos State obliged but found no Anambra State Government Representative on arrival at the agreed date and was hence forced to leave the people at a government office they found at the Niger Bridgehead. The Lagos State Government further explained that this kind of exchange of destitutes occur between states, as she recently went to Akwa Ibom State to take back two of her rehabilitated citizens.( see letter as annex 4). You will recall Mr. President of Aka Ikenga, that I had assured the Aka Ikenga
members that the Lagos State Government that I am familiar with will not go out of its way to cause hardship to our people and this is evident in its disposition as the first Government of Lagos State to appoint an Igbo as a commissioner and many others into other cabinet positions. For promotion and maintenance of the good relationship that exists between the
Igbos who form about 25% of the population of Lagos State and their Lagos host, I have secured an appointment for you, the President and Executive members of Aka Ikenga to further discuss this matter and other sundry issues affecting Ndi Igbo in Lagos State, with the Lagos State Governor on a date that will be mutually agreed by both parties.
As a member of the Action Congress of Nigeria ( ACN), which is the party in power in Lagos State, I wish to further reassure you and Aka Ikenga in particular and Ndi Igbo in general, that the government of Lagos State, that I am familiar with does not and will not harbour any anti Igbo agenda, as being, insinuated in some certain quarters. Accept as usual the assurances of my highest regards.
Senator Chris Nwabueze Ngige, MD, OON, KSJ
Senator representing Anambra Central Senatorial District
( Former Governor Anambra State, 2003-2006)