Enugu State Governor Peter Mbah said today that the forced Monday sit-at-home must end in the state immediately.
After meeting with security chiefs in Enugu today, he issued an order for people to return to work on Mondays.
His Government will enforce the order “with all the powers at its disposal,” he said and urged citizens to comply.
“My charge to all of you – market men and women, the corporate world, industries, schools, civil servants, and all strata of workers in Enugu State is for us to take back our sense of industry, pride of place and re-enact our glorious past.
“By heeding this call, you would have set us on the path of actualizing our mandate,” he said.
Killing the people’s spirit
Gov Mbah outlined the case for cessation of Monday sit-at-home order which “restricts the peoples creativity, entrepreneurship, and productivity”
“A time comes in the lives of a people when they must decide whether they genuinely want to move forward or remain stuck with the conditions of their underdevelopment.
“The creativity and sense of industry of Ndi Igbo are remarkable. Our DNA is wired with commercial and entrepreneurial prowess.
“If this is what we are known by, then it becomes inconsistent with reality that the spirit of entrepreneurship, commerce and creativity are killed every Monday in our land. Our restless spirit of industry abhors laxity and indolence.
“The idea behind sitting at home on Monday, the first working and business day of the week, is abominable and antithetical to greatness and the spirit of industry we profess to have inherited from our forebears. This cannot be us. Tufiakwa (God forbid). It does colossal damage to us”, he further added.
He said that to implement his policy of transiting from a public sector to a private sector driven economy requires the state to free itself from the shackles of restriction to commerce. This is the only way to attract foreign investment in the state, he said.
“If indeed we aspire and anticipate an influx of private sector practitioners and investors in Enugu State, we must know that this will not happen where the perception of us is that of unproductive people.
“Therefore, those that strike on Mondays, putting restrictions in the way of our Igbo spirit of creativity, cannot be our true representatives. In fact, they kill our spirit.
“We know that our land is a fertile ground for commerce. However, businesses, entrepreneurship and commerce require a vibrant workforce and big markets where they can flourish and make money.
“To this end, therefore, from Monday June 6, 2023, there will be no observance of any sit-at-home in all nooks and crannies of Enugu State.
The Nnamdi Kanu factor
Although the authentic faction of the IPOB Movements distanced itself from the Monday ritual, the Governor linked the continued detention of its leader to the success of the orders.
Releasing Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, the separatist leader who is in a holding cell at the Department of State Security is important to healing the country, Mbah said,
His government is ready to dialogue with aggrieved groups to secure peace in the state.
He also said the release of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu will “quicken the much-needed healing process in Nigeria.”
“I call on …President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, to consciously work towards the release of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.
“We believe that his release will expedite the healing process Nigeria needs at this time.
“It will also be a pointer to his administration’s extension of brotherly hands of fellowship to Ndi-Igbo”, he said.