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Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Adekunle Fajuyi: They want us to forget

Written by Yinka Odumakin
~Vaqnguard Nigeria. Tuesday, July 26, 2016
Adekunle Fajuyi

The ancient city of Ibadan comes alive on Friday July 29, 2016 as dignitaries from all walks of life converge to remember that gallant,brave and outstanding soldier,Col Adekunle Fajuyi, who was murdered 50 years ago by Northern military officers who massed on the capital of the Western Region to take out then Head of State, Major General Johnson Aguiyi- Ironsi.
The International Conference at the University of Ibadan is the place to be as prolific writer and teacher, Prof Niyi Osundare, speaks on "Fajuyi and the Politics of Remembrance". Fiery preacher, Pastor Tunde Bakare and Prof Wale Adebanwi will spice his thoughts.

I spoke with a 27-year-old a few weeks back and I was shocked he had no idea who Fajuyi was. And it quickly dawned on me that those who stopped the teaching of History in our schools have succeeded in wiping off the memory card of our pertinent stories .They want us to be blank but we must keep telling our stories.

Adekunle Fajuyi did not commit any crime than the fact that he was playing host to Ironsi on July 29,1966 when Northern officers who staged a revenge coup following the Kaduna Nzeogwu-led coup of January 15,1966 struck.Disgruntled Northern officers led by Murtala Mohammed, TY Danjuma,Martin Adamu and others spearheaded a rebellion within the army after the event of January.

On one occasion, Murtala called Ironsi a "fool" in the presence of other officers and threatened to avenge the death of his Northern officer colleagues. His position as the Inspector of Signals became quite veritable for the planning of the revenge coup nicknamed "Operation Araba"(Araba is Hausa word for let's divide it).

Murtala and his Northern colleagues had totally lost confidence in the Nigerian federation and their plan was to break Northern region from Nigeria.Their politicians had earlier pulled out of the Federal Parliament in 1953 after the crisis that followed their rejection of Enahoro's motion that Nigeria should become independent in 1956.They produced an eight-point demand which effectively wanted a confederal Nigeria as a precondition to return.

As their coup began on July 29, 1966, it was Murtala who coordinated the take-over of the International Airport in Lagos,an edifice to be named after him 10 years later.When he and his troops arrived the airport,they hijacked planes to ferry their families back to the North as a prelude to the exit of the region from Nigeria.

An Igbo officer(Captain Okoye) was captured by them and tied to an iron cross and beaten to death.In Military units across Lagos,Kaduna and Ibadan, Northern troops went gaga and murdered their Igbo colleagues in gruesome manner, eliminating hundreds of them.The arrowhead of the whole operation was Murtala who had close links with NPC as his Uncle Inuwa Wada was the Defence Minister.

When Danjuma and co arrived Ibadan they made for the Government House where there was a detachment of 106 Artillery commanded by William Walbe from Plateau State on guard.It later came to light that Walbe was part of the conspiracy. He later became ADC to Gowon. By some act of naivety Fajuyi's ADC was one Lt Adamu, while Ironsi had Lt Sani Bello.
In an interview granted to an Hausa paper, Rariya in 2013, Jeremiah Useni who was a Lieutenant at the time of the coup said the following :

"But while that was going on, words started going round about what the Igbo officers were saying: That they had killed the snake, but had failed to cut off the head. Which meant those of us left might make them suffer later, that there was therefore the need to finish us off. Instead of them to show remorse and apologise, they were planning another sinister attack.
We were together with Col. Remawa at the time, he was serving in Abeokuta, and we heard of a grand plot to kill our emirs. A meeting of all emirs was called in Ibadan, all our emirs gathered in Ibadan, that the head of state, Ironsi, would address them. So we said, are we going to let him come, address them and leave? Or should we just kill him or what? Our fear was that he was in the company of our emirs, and you know bullets do not select whom to hit. What do we do? We don't want even a single emir to die.

"We also considered arresting him at his lodge before he goes to meet with them. Col. Adekunle Fajuyi was the governor of South West at the time, and the head of state, Ironsi, was staying in his house in Ibadan. So we don't want a situation where they would say he conspired with us. So we decided the best thing to do was to open fire there even if Governor Fajuyi was also caught, so that they would just be buried together, and that was what happened."

When the soldiers seized Ironsi, Fajuyi insisted on going with him as he considered it a betrayal of valour to abandon his guest at the most decisive hour.They pushed them into a Land Rover and drove them to Lalupon on Iwo Road where the duo were shot dead.
When the killings were done with, senior Northern officers converged at the Ikeja Cantonment in Lagos. Brigadier Ogundipe who was the most senior surviving officer could not face them given their mood and had to send Chief of Staff(Army) Lt-Col Yakubu Gowon to mediate.

It was 28-year-old Murtala who was most recalcitrant as he insisted that Northern troops should destroy Lagos, pull out to the North and secede.When the Military Governor of the East, Lt-Colonel Ojukwu managed to reach Ogundipe,the latter told him that Northern troops had stated their conditions for a "ceasefire": (1) the repatriation of Northerners and Southerners to their respective regions (2) the secession of Northern Region from Nigeria.

Ojukwu's response was "let them go if that is what they want". He later urged Ogundipe to take charge since Ironsi’s whereabouts was unknown and promised to make a broadcast 30 minutes after Ogundipe in his support. But Northern officers were no longer in the mood for a Southern rule. Ogundipe got it in clear terms when a Northern Sergeant told him: "I do not take orders from you until my (Northern) captain comes". A Northern Private equally refused to obey orders from the Military Governor of Lagos State, Major Mobolaji Johnson.

When Gowon gauged the mood of his northern colleagues,he called the head of the Police Special Branch, Alhaji MD Yusuf and informed him that the Northern soldiers had drafted a speech declaring the secession of the Northern region from Nigeria.He asked for a lawyer to look at the speech which was influenced by Murtala and Major Martin Adamu.A Northern judge,Mr Justice Bello who was in Lagos at the time told the soldiers that all the nation's money was locked in the Central Bank of Nigeria in Lagos and asked them how they would pay their soldiers after secession without access to the CBN.Some of the soldiers quickly went to throw cordon around the CBN.

The Northern officers were joined by the British and American ambassadors, Sir Francis Cumming-Bruce and Elbert Matthews, respectively. Among other civilians with them were two Northern judges,head of Northern region's civil service, Ahajji Ali Akilu,Muktar Tahir, Chief Justice Adetokunbo Ademola,Mr Justice Bello,the chairman of the Public Service Commission, Alhaji Sule Katagum. There were also permanent secretaries such as Alhaji Musa Daggash, Abdul Aziz Attah, Yusuf Gobir, Allison Ayida, Ibrahim Damcida, etc. Police representatives included the Inspector -General of police, Alhaji Kam Salem and the head of the Special Branch, MD Yussuf.
From three days they argued ferociously over the soul of Nigeria with the civilians trying hard to convince the soldiers that the North had everything to lose if it should secede as it would be landlocked between the South and the sea.It was a cul-de-sac as the coup was not planned with any objective for Nigeria as a whole but a mere revenge against the Igbo and to move the North out of Nigeria.

After they failed to convince the meeting on secession and with the country without a government for three days, the Northern officers agreed to drop their plan to secede but only on the condition that the most senior officer among them Lt-Col Gowon be appointed the Head of State.This was done for the 32-year-old in spite of the presence of more senior officers in the chain of command (all Southerners) like Brigadier Ogundipe,Commodore Wey, Col Robert Adebayo, Lt -Cols Nwaw, Imo Kurubo, Effiong,Njoku and several other Lt-Cols who were commissioned before Gowon.

The initial coup speech given by Gowon was poorly edited that it still dripped with the poisonous mindset of Murtala and his "Araba" colleagues. Hear him:
"I have now come to the most difficult part, or the most important part, of this statement. I am doing it, conscious of the great disappointment and heartbreak it will cause all true and sincere lovers of Nigeria and of Nigerian unity both at home and abroad, especially our brothers in the Comm-onwealth.

“As a result of the recent events and the other previous similar ones, I have come to strongly believe that we cannot honestly and sincerely continue in this wise, as the basis of trust and confidence in our unitary system of government has not been able to stand the test of time. I have already remarked on the issues in question. Suffice to say that, putting all considerations to test-political, economic, as well as social-the base for unity is not there or is so badly rocked, not only once but several times. I therefore feel that we should review the issue of our national standing and see if we can help stop the country from drifting away into utter destruction” (Yakubu Gowon , August1, 1966).
The "difficult part" that was to cause "heartbreak" had been deleted from the speech of course and it was time to Go-On-With- One-Nigeria on their own terms.
When the same folks today tell us that the "unity of Nigeria is not negotiable", they are definitely not talking about the unity they once questioned as narrated above. I think what they are saying is that "our conquest of Nigeria is not negotiable"
Thank you Max Siollun!

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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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