Anglican Bishops as well as the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, have expressed dissatisfaction and worry over the dismantling of Eastern rail lines.
This is coming on the heels of the ongoing removal and carting away of rail tracks in the entire Eastern corridor by some unidentified persons accompanied by security agencies.
Both the bishops and IPOB noted with sadness that no information was in the public domain about the action and where the dismantled rail lines are taken to.
The Anglican bishops who spoke at the 13th Diocesan Christian Men Fellowship Conference held in Umuahia demanded explanations from the Federal Government on the whereabouts of the disconnected rail tracks.
“We are not comfortable with the manner the rail lines are being disconnected and taken away to an unknown destination without any official communication to the members of the public”, the Bishops fumed in a statement.
The statement signed by the Bishop of Anglican Communion, Diocese of Umuahia, Rt. Rev. Geoffrey Ibeabuchi, also tasked those in authority to provide explanations for the disturbing development.
It read in part: “What is happening? The Federal Government promised sometime last year to build a narrow gauge from Port Harcourt to Maiduguri, linking up Ajaokuta and Bonny Seaport.
“What’s going on? Are they now dismantling the rail lines to commence the work or are they trying to disconnect the South Eastern corridor? We are watching.”
Similarly, IPOB in a statement by its Media and Publicity Secretary, Emma Powerful, accused the Federal Government of sinister plans over the dismantling of the rail lines.
According to IPOB, the action may not be unconnected with a plot to scuttle the agitation for Biafra, and ultimately strangulate the economy of the Eastern region.
IPOB argued that removing “existing rail lines in Biafraland particularly in Igbo territory”, without any replacement or convincing explanations calls for suspicion.
The statement made available to Vanguard read in part: “The rail lines in Igbo land were built by the colonial masters who saw the need for Igbo land to be connected by rail lines because we were one of the most civilized nations around, and also an industrial hub .
“Unfortunately, the present government has decided to remove all the rail tracks with no plan to replace them because of their hatred against Ndigbo which is beyond comprehension.”
IPOB said it was appalling that the Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government “did not lay new rail lines in Igbo land to improve transportation or commerce but is now busy removing the old ones laid by the colonial masters.”
The pro-Biafra movement challenged the federal government to respond to insinuations that the dismantled rail lines “are being used to repay Chinese Government loans taken by Eastern States.
“We ask them, when did Eastern States borrow money from China?”
IPOB promised to lay rail lines to “link Biafra with its Amazonian neighbours.
“IPOB is not afraid nor shaking and promises every Biafran that very soon, we will start laying our railways in Biafraland that will link us with Ambazonia and other African countries.
“IPOB assures our people that when Biafra comes, modern and electric speed train tracks that will operate both underground and above ground will be constructed.
“The government of Nigeria refused to lay new railway lines in Igbo land but were busy laying rail lines from Katsina to the Niger Republic with resources gotten from Biafra Land.
“Whatever inferior, substandard, and shoddy railroads they are building now is nothing compared to what we shall build in the immediate future.
“All African countries will emulate the massive infrastructural development that will happen within the first five years of Biafra Independence.”