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Tuesday, September 23, 2014


Written by Osita Ezeliora, Witwatersrand, South Africa

In May 30th, 2008, a group of young, elderly, and apparently angry 'Nigerians' converged at the amphitheatre of the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg. It was partly to mark the 41st anniversary of the creation of the State of Biafra, but more importantly to stimulate interest in, and engage the identity of the Nigerian nation more intellectually. The timing of the symposium would have been perfect. Unfortunately, the organizers of the seminar could not foresee the xenophobic violence that was to literally consume South Africa at about the same period. I had arrived from Durban only a day earlier after an important cultural function in that coastal city. For a while, the impressive hall was almost empty. I sat patiently with two lawyer friends and another close acolyte who only recently completed his doctoral research in engineering. There were slight grumbles, and just as we contemplated leaving for our various homes, it "rained" cats and dogs and the hall was filled to capacity. The coordinator of the Biafra National Congress, Coleman Emejulu, arrived after his associates had started discussion. There were high profile academics from all walks of life, especially from departments of conflict studies, political science, international relations, law, humanities, but mostly people from outside the academia. There were representatives from leading political parties in South Africa, the Pan African Congress (PAC), the African National Congress (ANC), the Jewish community, the Human Rights Commission (HRC), etc.

We listened to the discussions with rapt attention. Speaker after speaker spoke on the necessity for the resuscitation of Biafra. The zeal and enthusiasm was high, but it was not without some intelligent responses from many observers who felt that the contribution of Eastern Nigerians to the growth and development of Nigeria is too large for anyone to seriously contemplate a major further balkanisation of Nigeria at this stage of our nation's history. The arguments flowed: The Eastern Nigerians, more than any other ethnic groups, have contributed more to the development of Nigeria: where it is rare to travel to Aba, Onitsha, Enugu, Owerri, Yenogoa, or Okrika, to find residential houses built or developed by the Yoruba or the Hausa-Fulani communities, there is hardly any part of the country where you do not find the Igbo, the Efik, the Ibibio, and the rest of Eastern Nigerians. Where most other ethnic groups through their sons in the military embarked on a mission of destroying the economy of Nigeria, it is mostly people from Eastern Nigeria that travel to every part of the planet from Siberia to Iceland to raise funding for the development of most parts of Nigeria. Where many of Nigeria's military Generals and politicians end up buying mansions in Britain, Germany, Ireland, Luxemburg, Madrid, South Africa, and even Ghana, it is people from Eastern Nigeria that travel to all parts of the world to generate money for the building of major Nigerian cities.

A speaker from South Western Nigeria was particularly angry that Eastern Nigerians should be insisting on the return of the Biafra Republic when they should compel their Senators and Parliamentarians at the lower house to present a strong case for the development of South East Nigeria. The speaker was careful not to talk about Eastern Nigeria as the regionalization of the country would give legitimacy to the claims of Biafrans that the minority ethnic groups in the Eastern region are comfortable with the clamour for the return of the Biafra Republic. In his words, "The people of Yenegoa are the only ones that should complain about marginalization and not the entire people of the Eastern region". The argument he presented, unfortunately, exposed his lack of a historical sense: he recently travelled to Yenegoa and, while returning to South West Nigeria, his car broke down in the middle of nowhere in Bayelsa State. It was only then that he discovered that the area does not only lack electricity, but also that the province is not even connected to the National grid at all. The young man, apparently in his thirties, is not aware that most parts of the entire Eastern region suffer the same fate as Bayelsa State; he is not aware that the electricity he found in some areas of the South East zone were entirely due to community efforts, as well as from the occasional contributions of individuals who achieved economic success beyond the shores of the continent and felt like making their communities benefit from their success. The young man was quickly reminded of these efforts by communities, and that except for Chief Uche Chukwumerije and one or two other Senators, the so-called Parliamentarians in Abuja were Olusegun Obasanjo's toys who were not elected by the people of the South East zone.

What makes the clamour for the return of the Biafra Republic particularly painful at this time in our national life is that what most Biafrans complain about are things that should make every sane leader very proud to leave as legacy: why should anybody holding executive position as president of Nigeria not be interested in providing basic facilities for his subjects? Why should it be difficult to deploy Julius Berger to the Eastern region to do exactly what it did in both the North and the South West? Why should it be a problem to have a modern rail link between East-West and East-North axes just as we have in the West-North link? What does it cost to have a steel rolling mill in the South East zone in the same way we have the Jos, Katsina, Aladja, Ajaokuta, Osogbo steel rolling mills in other sections of the country? Why should the contract for the provision of electricity in the South East zone be awarded to General Abdulsalam Abubakar and his company even though he knows absolutely nothing about electricity, when similar contracts in other parts of the country are given to leading multinational firms like Julius Berger, Straberg, Cappa & D'Alberto, etc? What is wrong in citing at least one petrol refinery in every zone of the country? Why should we have problem with a call for the construction of a massive national theatre and a FESTAC town in every zone of the country?

The complaint about the maginalization of the Eastern region is felt across every facet of our national life. As some commentators argue, in spite of the claims that the South East zone is the least populated, the region is actually the most populated and homogenous part of the country. Two indisputable facts were presented: First, Ndiigbo constitute the single largest population East of the Niger and, two, Ndiigbo are the second largest population in every other part of the nation after the indigenes of the states. The dubiousness of the previous leaders of the country becomes evident in the number of states and local government areas that we find in the South East zone in particular, and the entire Eastern region in general. And the questions continue: why would it be a problem for the Nigeria leadership to create two additional states in the core South East zone, Anioma from Delta State, as well as Egun/Badagry State for the non-Yoruba speaking people of Ogun and Lagos States in the South West?

There was also the important issue of the nature of the Biafra nation needed: do we need the Biafra of the mind or a total disintegration of the Nigerian nation? For one of the speakers, "Nigeria is irreparably damaged". Talks about changing the mentality of Nigerian leaders-be they military or politicians-is too late in the day since many of Nigeria's political office holders are sworn to a life of graft and non-productivity. For some of us, however, Nigeria could be better than its present form: what is needed is the Biafra of the mind: the Biafra spirit that challenged necessity and produced immense technological and scientific feats: the Biafra that produced the likes of Engineers Roy Umenyi, Emma Osolu, Prof. Ezekwe, Chimere Ikokwu, Frank Ndili, etc, and much later the Biafra that gave Augustine Esogbue, Philip Emeagwali, Batholomew Nnaji, and several other leading engineers, scientists and nuclear phycisists to the universe of humankind. Questions about secession were dismissed on the understanding that the secession of Biafra in 1967 was purely a survivalist effort that needed to be made at the time, rather than wait to be totally exterminated by Nigeria's Brigadier Benjamin Adekunle and his war criminal friends. As uncomfortable as the Nigerian union is to the many that inhabit it, its dissolution is something that should be left for Nigerians at a sovereign national conference. In such a conference, nothing should be left un-discussed: there are always alternatives in conflict resolutions, and Nigerians have a right to go for either the Yugoslavian or the Czechoslovakian options as the former Biafran leader, Chief Emeka Odumegwu-Ojukwu once suggested.

For those who complained bitterly about the double standards in the admission policy in Nigerian universities, the suggestion was made for them to ignore Nigerian universities and go to wherever they can acquire quality education. In any case, the battles for fairness in our admission policies were fought principally in the 1980s: candidates with very high scores in JAMB were denied admission in a number of universities because they were deemed not to belong to the Universities' "catchment area" in North Nigeria. This led to the creation of State-run universities in the South East and South West zones as education minister, Jubril Aminu, tried to frustrate the new institutions. Some of us still remember the late Tai Solarin reminding Prof Aminu that his efforts would remain inconsequential since what he would succeed in doing is tantamount to "the tail wagging the dog". Tai Solarin's prophecy has remained right till this day. At least, one University in North Nigeria was recently closed down for the institution's inability to attract students, let alone succeed in enticing qualified academic staff to run it. Pressures are currently being mounted on JAMB to reduce the pass mark for University admission to a mere 170! This, in a country that denied admission to candidates that scored 240s and above.

There was an infuriating angle to the symposium: some members of the audience found it difficult to turn off their cell phones, even as they tried to remind us of the immense achievements of Biafran Nigerians. At this point, the audience was reminded that what we need is to replenish Nigeria's intellectual culture rather than the glamorisation of obscenities that tend to define the conducts of our young people in recent time. Why organize a seminar in a University community if it's such a difficult thing to turn off ordinary cell phones? We need more Chinua Achebes, Wole Soyinkas, Augustine Esogbues, Frank Ndilis, Chike Obis, Gabriel Oyibos, etc. The audience had to be reminded further that barely eight years into the 21st century, Prof Emeagwali is already working on the Internet of the 22nd century even as some of us don't even know how to turn off ordinary cell phones that were designed by a teenager in the near-by Physics laboratory.

The organiser of the symposium, Coleman Emejulu, stunned everyone, when he informed the audience that he made at least ten visits to the Nigerian High Commission in Johannesburg and Pretoria, where he suggested to the Nigeria's High Commissioner to attend the seminar or, at least, send a Cleaner to tell members of the audience why they should be proud to be called Nigerians. Neither the High Commissioner nor the Cleaners made it to the symposium. Once more, Nigeria's Foreign Affairs Ministry subjected itself to public ridicule. Perhaps, the Presidency should be informed of the necessity to send men and women of sound mind to our Foreign missions since there are too many disadvantages in sending people of dumb credentials to strategic countries as our representatives. On the whole, it was a most stimulating experience since there was opportunity for everyone who supports or disagrees with the idea of Biafra to express his or her mind. No better environment could have attracted so many sound minds than a University community.
The Nigeria's Federal Government should, as a matter of urgency, address many of the grievances of most Eastern Nigerians. In particular, the issue of State creation in the South East zone should be prioritised for reasons of justice and fair play; road construction, especially the links between Onitsha and Yenogoa through Owerri and Port Harcourt, the links between Nnewi and Calabar, Okigwe and Ogoja, Okrika to Abakaliki, among others are roads that need urgent dualization. The clamour for, and aggression against, Biafra are issues that can readily be attended to by the Yar'Adua administration. Nigeria has enormous resources to provide these facilities. It could be needless asking for a further balkanisation of the country, but it is dubious and demonic to attack those clamouring for justice. Those who adorned the apron of minority and sabotaged Biafra nationalism at the end of the 1960s may not be courageous enough to admit their foolishness today. Yet, we all know that the current debacle in the Niger Delta is a consequence of the miscalculation of strategic opportunists who were desperate to be identified as Nigerian heroes. Many got compensated with property of murdered Igbo sons and daughters. Many of them discovered their lack of wisdom very late in the day, and some paid for it with their own lives after over three decades of the Biafra genocide. Only a lunatic from Ogoja, Ogoni, Okrika, Yenogoa, or Ikot- Ekpene would want to sabotage efforts made at providing basic facilities, especially road construction in Onitsha, Nnewi, Aba, Owerri, or Abakaliki. In the final analysis, the entire Eastern region is the ultimate loser.

The organizers of the seminar did a marvellous job which was capped finally with their provision of delicious Biafra~Nigerian cuisine. If only the Nigeria's ambassador to South Africa had courage enough to attend such an exciting symposium...!

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I am an Igbo, I was born an Igbo, I live the life of an Igbo, I come from Igbo, I speak Igbo, I like to be Igbo, I like to dress in Igbo, I eat Igbo food, my heritage, culture and tradition is Igbo, my parents are Igbo.

Am sorry I cannot help it if you hate my lineage. Am sorry I cannot help it if you detest Igbo, am sorry I cannot help it if you hate me because am Igbo. Igbo is who I am, my name is Igbo and I must die an Igbo.

You see Igbo as a threat, why? You call Igbo rapist, criminals, ritualist, prostitutes, kidnappers. You attribute all negative vices to represent Igbo? Why do you do that? You do because you feel threatened that Igbo might outrun the rest of the tribes. Why do you hate Igbo and despise us? You do that because we are creative, enlightened, hardworking, industrious, genius, intelligent, smart, rich, beautiful and amazing. But its difficult for you to admit it because you feel jealous of my race.

Igbo do not own politics, Igbo do not control the economy neither do we control the natural resources and the common wealth of the nation. You do, we don't and yet, despite the fact that you own everything, we still remain one indispensable race that has outshined the other race in all ramifications.

You fear us because you want to exterminate and annihilate our race, you deny us many things and yet we are stronger, richer and mightier. You fear us because we are everywhere. You fear us because no matter how rural a place might be, when Igbo steps in, they turn it into a Paradise. We have our own resources, which lies in resourcefulness, we do not bother you and your control over the polity, but yet when we cough you and the other race begin to shiver.

Am proud being an Igbo, am proud of my heritage and culture. Igbo means high class, Igbo means independence, Igbo means hard work and strength, Igbo means riches, Igbo means resourcefulness, Igbo means self belonging, Igbo means self esteem, Igbo means pride, Igbo means swag.

Udo diri unu umunnem.
# IgboAmaka
# AnyiBuNdiMmeri

Michael Ezeaka

This is beautiful poetry ...

In response to Alaba Ajibola, the Babcock Lecturer Hate Speech against Igbos.


In Igboland women live apart from their husbands and neither cook for them nor enter their husband's quarters when they are in their period. They are seen as unclean. Even up till today such practice is still applicable in some parts of Igboland especially by the traditionalists. Before a woman can enter the palace of Obi of Onitsha, she will be asked if she is in her period, if yes, she will be asked to stay out.

Leviticus 15: 19-20
When a woman has her monthly period, she remains unclean, anyone who touches her or anything she has sat on becomes unclean.

An Igbo man's ancestral heritage, called “Ana Obi” is not sellable, elders will not permit this. If this is somehow done due to the influence of the West the person is considered a fool and is ostracized by the community.

1 Kings 21:3
I inherited this vineyard from my ancestors, and the Lord forbid that I should sell it, said Naboth.

Igbos have practiced the taking of a late brother's wife into marriage after she had been widowed until the white men came. Now it is rarely done but except in very rural villages.

Deuteronomy 25:5
A widow of a dead man is not to be married outside the family; it is the duty of the dead man's brother to marry her.

In Igboland, there is a unique form of apprenticeship in which either a male family member or a community member will spend six (6) years (usually in their teens to their adulthood) working for another family. And on the seventh year, the head of the host household, who is usually the older man who brought the apprentice into his household, will establish (Igbo: idu uno) the apprentice
by either setting up a business for him or giving money or tools by which to make a living.

Exodus 21:2
If you buy a Hebrew slave, he shall serve you for six years. In the seventh year he is to be set free without having to pay you anything.

In Igboland , the yam is very important as it is their staple crop. There are celebrations such as the New yam festival (Igbo: Iri Ji) which are held for the harvesting of the yam. New Yam festival (Igbo: Iri ji) is celebrated annually to secure a good harvest of the staple crop. In the olden days it is an abomination for one to eat a new harvest before the festival. It's a tradition that you give the gods of the land first as a thanksgiving.

Deuteronomy 16:9
Count 7 weeks from the time that you begin to harvest the crops, and celebrate the harvest festival to honor the lord your God, by bringing him a freewill offering in proportion to the blessing he has given you. Celebrate in the Lord's presence together with your children, servants, foreigners. Be sure that you obey my command, said the Lord.

In Igboland it's a tradition that the male children are circumcised on the 8th day. This tradition is still practiced till date.

Leviticus 12:3
On the eighth day, the child shall be circumcised.

In Igboland, there is a practice known as "ile omugwo ". After a woman has given birth to a child, a very close and experienced relative of hers, in most cases her mother is required by tradition to come spend time with her and her husband. During which she is to do all the work of the wife, while the new mom's only assignment to the baby will be to breastfeed. This goes on for a month or more. In the Igbo old tradition, at this time, the new mom lives apart from her husband, would not cook or enter his quarters.

Leviticus 12:1-4
For seven days after a woman gives birth, she is ritually unclean as she is during her monthly period. It will be 33 days until she is ritually clean from the loss of blood; she is not to touch anything that is holy.


The Igbo tribe is in a serious problem and danger of extinction for the following reasons:

50% of Igbos are born outside Igbo land. Meaning that those children are not likely to live and work in Igbo land and cannot speak Igbo language but foreign language (Yoruba, Hausa, French, English).

40% of Igbos girls between the age of 25 & 45 are single with no hope of marriage because 35% of Igbo boys live overseas and they have all married white ladies.

75% of Igbo youths leave Igbo land every year in search of opportunities in Yoruba, Hausa land or overseas.

85 % of Igbos have family houses and own investments outside Igbo land. They strongly believe in one Nigeria but failed to know that NO Yoruba or Hausa man has a family house or investment in Igbo land.

Igbos are the only people who believe that living outside their land is an achievement.

Igbos are the only tribe that celebrate their tradition outside their land e.g. Eze Ndi Igbo, Igbo Village in America and this is because they have family homes in foreign lands.

Igbos have failed to know that the children you have outside Igbo land especially overseas will never think of living in Igbo land. So what happens to the properties you are building for them when you are gone?

Igbos are the only tribe who see their land as a place to visit or a tourist site than a place to work and live.

Igbos are the only tribe who instead of promoting and appreciating their culture through movies and documentaries they have sought to ridicule it by portraying rituals, killings, wickedness, love for money and other social vices which were not originally inherent in our culture thereby cursing more harm than actually promoting their culture.

Igbos are the only people who without hesitation believe their history and description when it is told or written by an enemy or a foreigner. E.g. that you do not love yourselves or that you love money.

Igbos are the ONLY largest tribe on earth who fought for their independence and failed to achieve their freedom after 40 years.

Igbos are the only tribe who fails to honour their brave heroes and heroines especially the innocent children starved to death during the Biafran war.

Igbos are the only tribe who embraced their enemy after a bloody civil war and subsequently become slaves.

Igbos do not find it necessary to teach their own version of history to their children.

Igbos fight for marginalisation in Nigeria but has no collective strength or teeth to bite.

Igbos how long are you going to fight for your relevance in Nigeria?

How long are you going to fight for a functional airport, rail networks and other structural establishments that underpin sustainable development?

How long are you prepared to wait for your enemy to guide you to your destiny?

Oh Igbos!
Where are your leaders?

Unfortunately, none of them live and work in Igbo land. If you wish to save the future of your children, your identity, your generation and your race then you need freedom and that freedom is Biafra.

Ukpana Okpoko gburu bu nti chiri ya!

By Chime Eze

The Igbo: We die for causes, not for personalities

Written by Emeka Maduewesi

~on fb. 28th September, 2016.

The Igbo will never die for anyone. We will not even riot for anyone. But the Igbo will die for any cause they believe in because the Igbo have a true sense of justice and a determination to obtain it.

The Igbo will not riot because one of their own lost an election. Operation Wetie was the Western response to a massively rigged 1965 election. The Yoruba doused fellow Yorubas in petrol and burnt them alife. Properties were burnt with occupants. The Igbo will never do this.

In 1983, the Yoruba went on a rampage again over the massive rigging by NPN. Lifes were lost and properties destroyed. The riots were over personalities.

Contrast that with Anambra State where Chief Emeka Ojukwu was rigged out by his own NPN, who also rigged out Chief Jim Nwobodo. The Igbo did not protest because the goat's head is still in the goat's bag.

In the North, ba muso was the battle cry when Sultan Dasuki was imposed on the Sokoto Caliphate. The riot and protest lasted for days and crippled economic activities.

The Igbo will riot over issues and causes. The Aba Women Riot was over Tax. The Enugu coal mine riot was about conditions of service. The Ekumeku Uprising was over British colonialization.

Those of "Ekumeku" ancestry - Umu Eze Chima and Umu Nri - were at the forefront of the struggles for Nigerian independence, with people like Dr. A A Nwafor Orizu and Chief Osita Agwuna serving prison terms. Any struggles the parents could not conclude is continued by the children by other means.

The Biafran war was a response to the genocide. The war in fact was brought upon us. The battlefield was Eastern Region. The war ended in 1970 but the issues and causes were not resolved. That is where we are today.

The Igbo will also jointly rise to fight evil in their midst. They did it in Onitsha in the 1980's, Owerri in the 90's, and with Bakkassi in the 2000.

The Igbo will not die for any man. But the Igbo will stand by any man who symbolizes their cause and their pursuit of justice. Even if the man dies, the struggle continues, and like the Ekumeku warriors, the children will pick up the baton from their parents.

This is the Igbo I know, the Igbo I am, and the Igbo we are. This is my story. Feel free to tell yours.


"My boy, may you live to your full potential, ascend to a dizzy height as is possible for anyone of your political description in your era to rise. May you be acknowledged world-wide as you rise as an eagle atop trees, float among the clouds, preside over the affairs of fellow men.... as leaders of all countries pour into Nigeria to breathe into her ear.

But then, Chuba, if it is not the tradition of our people that elders are roundly insulted by young men of the world, as you have unjustly done to me, may your reign come to an abrupt and shattering close. As you look ahead, Chuba, as you see the horizon, dedicating a great marble palace that is the envy of the world, toasted by the most powerful men in the land, may the great big hand snatch it away from you. Just as you look forward to hosting the world’s most powerful leader and shaking his hands, as you begin to smell the recognition and leadership of the Igbo people, may the crown fall off your head and your political head fall off your shoulders.

None of my words will come to pass, Chuba, until you have risen to the very height of your power and glory and health, but then you will be hounded and humiliated and disgraced out of office, your credibility and your name in tatters forever...”


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