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Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Biafra this, Biafra that

Written by Obi Nwakanma
~Vanguard Nigeria. Sunday, November 6, 2016.

Dr. Charles Soludo, Professor of the Economic Sciences, former Economic Adviser to the President of the federation, and former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, very recently said at a book launch on the subject of Biafra that ignoring the new Biafra secessionist movement will be a mistake by the Buhari administration. I couldn't agree more. Soludo just amplifies the position which this column has consistently taken in the past, and which I wish to reaffirm today. The Biafra movement is a slow-burning fire at the moment.

In a speculative survey, it is easy to assume the following scenarios: that 40% of Igbo people back the secessionist objective of the new Biafra movements, 20% are currently unconvinced, and in between is 40% of the undecided, the ambivalent, and the neutral, who could go one way or the other. In other words, only 40% of the Igbo population currently stand in the way, or constitute the difference between a secessionist movement in full force, or a merely fissiparous movement that could very easily, and strategically be demobilized if the Federal government applies civilized and strategic methods, including the "capturing of hearts and minds technique." This flash statistics can equally be applied to the remaining population of the East and the parts of the old Midwest, now all called the "South-South" which constitute the geographical areas claimed by the Biafran secessionists.

The federal government currently treats this movement as some kind of flash-in-the pan phenomenon, inspired mostly by a reactionary impulse, by a new generation of young people, mostly those who were born after the war, and who suffer the massive unemployment that ravages the region with its vast number of the skilled and unemployed as some kind of outlet for the frustration.

The strategy has been to burst their open-air protests using military and police action, and contain them by force from street protests. This is a "dead-end" policy. It shows quite clearly that Nigeria's national security policy is unimaginative, and geared mostly to constabulary methods. But I should not tell the federal government what to do. They ought to have, and where they do not, they should develop the kind of expertise that can be fully deployed to providing, and thinking out frameworks of action, that can manage these kinds of conflicts, so that it does not escalate into war and bloodshed, and so that the federal government may have its hat in the game of winning the argument for a sustainable and shared nation. Now, the argument for Biafra, and its increasing appeal rests squarely in the feeling particularly, of the Igbo, of political isolation, economic subjugation, mistreatment, lack of opportunity in Nigeria, and the discrimination they have suffered within the current nation, particularly since the end of the civil war in 1970.

It is true too that the Igbo have suffered all these and more, and that the there is a serious disjuncture between the rights of the Igbo as Nigerians and the conditions to which they've been subjected in the unspoken Carthaginian treaty at force, that subverts the treaty of "No Victor, No Vanquished" to which the Biafrans agreed as precondition for the acceptance of an end to hostilities. Let me put this in context: Biafrans have argued that the primary condition for which they agreed to end the civil war in 1970, and not to launch the Guerrilla phase of that war, or continue hostilities was on the agreements reached to reabsorb Biafrans into national life without discrimination or recrimination; the launch of the program of Rehabilitation, Reconstruction, and Reintegration, the so-called "three Rs."

The new Biafrans claim that the Federal government reneged on this agreement since none of the Rs took place in the East. Nothing was rebuilt, including the damaged energy or power systems, public buildings, cities, roads, and so on. Dr. Alex Ekwueme has given grist to the claim that the coup of December 1983 was specifically targeted at Igbo political leadership, and particularly, the possibility that he might be president in 1987.

It was a claim first made in Sam Goomsu Ikoku's 1986 memoir, from his encounter with key northern political prisoners in Kirikiri after the coup, and no one has yet refuted this. As a matter of fact, the new Biafra movement began in 1999, when in reaction to the subversion of the Ekwueme candidacy following the PDP convention in Jos, the group MASSOB was formed by a disaffected Igbo lawyer, Ralph Uwazurike. Uwazurike himself had been a victim in many ways of the Nigerian malaise: his sister he claimed had been killed in the last war, and he did not forget. But far truer is that his law practice in Lagos was something of a sham, and he was part of the group of Igbo who made do by living on their wit, in that era which gave rise to what we now call 419, because Nigeria denied his bright mind the opportunity for fuller, more legitimate expression. MASSOB launched what was at first a rag-tag mission based on Ghandi's Satyagraha, the "non-violent" mode of political action based on the "truth-force."

The aim, Uwazurike claimed was to achieve Biafra's independence by step-by-step scaling of political action using pacifist methods. Biafra was always a romantic option for the Igbo, especially for the young disaffected, who have always imagined it as some kind of "lost Eldorado" - a place where "everything would have worked, had Biafra not been subverted and betrayed."

Biafra has acquired the sheen of "Jerusalem" for a new "Jewish" exile - and indeed, "Biafran Zionism" basically frames itself in the same context of the Jewish exile and resistance. A lot of its impulse is drawn from groups of Igbo "exiles" in the global "Diaspora." In the last ten years, new groups have emerged claiming to speak and fight for Biafra, among them, the IPOB, the Indigenous People of Biafra, which has been given some kind of left-handed validity by the arrest of Nnamdi Kanu, its spokesman. The arrest of Kanu has provided some kind of impetus, and once again, shows a bumbling and incompetent federal government which reacts, knee-jerk, to issues around Biafra. Now, here is some truth to consider: Biafra is a most sensitive issue to any true Igbo person, and for the Igbo, and this is the truth that Nigerians must come to accept, Biafra is the idealization of what the Igbo dream of as the quintessence of nation: possibility, innovation, political freedom, the power to transform their society through their own abilities and compete with the rest of the developed world. The Igbo genuinely feels that Nigeria is a serious burden on their ability and their ambition.

It is of course arguable. But for as long as Nigeria continues to discriminate against the Igbo, the search to opt out of Nigeria will continue. President Buhari himself has, in his actions since he arrived to power, given even greater impetus to the agitation. But then, it is equally true that the Biafran movement has been bumbling, disorganized, and unclear about its mission in particular ways too.

Support for "Biafra" is currently based on an over-romanticized idea of this lost nation. But the language of this agitation is frightening off many thoughtful Igbo who see a truly fascist impulse in the current movement. And many, like me are opposed to fascism. In this agitation, there is no clear statement about the vision of Biafra that would be different from what the neo-Biafrans want to escape from. There are many skeptics who have noted that it would be fool-hardy to jump from frying pan to fire. There is no evidence that Biafra offers any clear alternative other than a dream. There is nothing that documents the vision of the movement beyond "leaving the zoo called Nigeria."

The new Biafran movement has not offered Ndi Igbo anything other than isolationism and the contraction of space, particularly given quite frankly, that a more coherent Nigeria offers the Igbo a vaster playing field. The question therefore has been, should the Igbo not fare better by fighting with the same energy deployed now to this agitation, to forcing the emergence of a "new Nigeria?" Perhaps what the Biafrans should do is to argue for the treaty of autonomy, much like the Catalan "statute of Autonomy" with the government of Spain, or the Irish republican status obtained by the Irish republic from the British Commonwealth.

In other words, I think that the current agitation for Biafra has to be rethought, and reconsidered within pragmatic parameters. As a matter of fact, the first step might be to obtain the democratic mandate of the people to speak for them on this issue. The Biafrans must first present themselves to the Igbo electorate, campaign on this issue of Biafra, and win and secure their mandate, and then take it from there. This is vital, otherwise the current movement for Biafra will lack the legitimacy to speak for the Igbo because it currently has no mandate. This much was said, and it rings true, by Mr. Godfrey Onyeama, an Igbo, and Nigeria's current Foreign Minister.

No comments:


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...”


Biafra Videos: Explosive secret about Biafra...

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