The Odinala Cultural Heritage Foundation (OCHIE Igbo), a socio-cultural organisation of young Igbo professionals, has called on the Department of State Services (DSS) to be more professional in its operations.
OCHIE Igbo gave the advice following a recent tweet on the official Twitter handle of the DSS describing some legal practitioners from the Southeast region as “charge-and-bail” lawyers.
The group, in a statement on Saturday signed by its National Publicity Secretary, Caleb Ekene Onwe, cautioned the security agency against incitement comments.
It said that the DSS, by intelligence structure and constitutional responsibility, “supposed to guard against internal conflict, promote harmony, unity and preserve the Nigerian state as an agency of the government.”
It said it was, however, disheartening that the security outfit went so low to making unwholesome statements.
“The attention of the Odinala Cultural Heritage Foundation, otherwise known as OCHIE Igbo, has been drawn to the unwholesome comment by the Department of State Security Services in its Tweets via its verified official Twitter handle (Department of State Services (DSS) @OfficialDSSNG) on July 18, 2023 by 12:50PM.
In the tweet, the DSS was quoted as saying, “Charge-and-bail, overzealous uninformed IPOB/ESN lawyer Maxwell Okpara mobilises other like minded lawyers against DGSS.
“Futile Efforts. Well, Nigerians, beware! This is in bad faith. Transferred aggression.
“A Biafran republic agitator and outlawed IPOB counsel defending the suspended CBN governor.
“Is IPOB defending one of theirs? What a contradiction, what’s the connection, may Maxwell be properly educated on points of law, please.”
He said that an attempt by the DSS to frame the lawyers up for terrorism by referring to them as Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and Eastern Security Network (ESN) lawyers was unacceptable, since IPOB had been proscribed by the Federal Government for being a terrorist group..
He said that DSS should be wary of ethnic profiling targeting innocent, decent, hapless and harmless indigenes of the southeast.
“We wish to caution the DSS that not every man or woman from the East is an IPOB member.
“A state-funded security organisation, whose primary duty is to gather sensitive security information and processed it into actionable intelligence and deploy same towards the protection of lives and properties of Nigerians, instead, abdicated its statutory responsibility to do the opposite.
“We at OCHIE Igbo are occupied with the task to engineer the Rebirth of a progressive 21st century community across the southeast zone through partnership with various government institutions and private establishments interested in the development of the entire region.”
The group, therefore, said that the DSS, as a refined intelligence agency, owed Nigerians an apology, not because of anything, “but to reinvent and restore our confidence in the service and also reclaim their dignity.”
It also called on President Bola Tinubu to caution the security agency against acts that could destabilized the country.