Fear of IPOB drives southeasterners indoors today for the second time since the separatist group decreed a sit-at-home Mondays.
However, IPOB leadership suspended the directive on Friday 13 August and also released a statement yesterday to emphasize the suspension.
Unfortunately, fake news purveyors spent yesterday sharing an old video message where IPOB activists threatened to deal with defaulters.
Consequently, most highways and streets in the South East were deserted this morning because of the mixed messages.
The southeast economy therefore suffered another devastating blow because of the confusion.
“There is confusion everywhere,” a senior civil servant who spoke to Enugu Metro from Awka, the Anambra State capital, said.
“Some say it’s been called off while others say sit-at-home.
“But I found out it’s not total lock-down, so I’m in my office,” he said.
Most streets in Anambra and Enugu were deserted as citizens huddled indoors.
An i-reporter at Ekwulobia, Anambra State, said today that the roads are “totally abandoned.”
“Nobody was stopping anybody but people are unsure of what to expect.
“From Igbo-Ukwu to Ekwulobia and back, I did not meet a single vehicle.
“Somebody blocked the Ekwulobia-Isuofia road with disused tyres. I came down from my car, removed the tyres and moved on.”
There were skeletal movements of people and commercial vehicles in Enugu.
“Coal City people are aware that it was cancelled,” another resident said.
Onitsha Markets shut
There were allegations that youths sympathetic to the separatist movement last week brutally enforced the sit-in.
Videos of charred commercial vehicles and restaurant food wasted by youths were freely shared online as evidence that the IPOB meant business.
“We cannot take chances,” a retail trader at Onitsha, John Uzoigwe, said.
He confirmed that all of the major Onitsha markets were shut today.
“Many of our traders lost a lot last week. Some are still recovering from the beating they had. We heard about (the suspension) but no one wants to take chances,” he emphasized.
IPOB on Friday 13 August announced suspended of the sit-at-home Mondays and replaced it with sit-ins on court appearance days for Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.
A spokesperson for the organisation yesterday emphasized that Mazi Kanu himself gave the order to suspend the unpopular directive.
However, fake news purveyors freely shared an old video from an IPOB operative warning people to stay indoors.
Many citizens therefore decided to err on the side of caution today 16 August.
Fear drives southeasterners indoors today over IPOB order