Dressed all in white, Nnamdi Kanu took his seat in the Federal High Court in Abuja, Nigeria, on February 9. Though he had been in detention for almost four months, the 48-year-old activist initially declined requests from court officers to agree to have his handcuffs removed.
In an act of defiance, he raised his cuffed hands to the television cameras. It was hard to divine his intention, but the act and his angry expression suggested that he barely recognized the authority of the court he found himself in.
Kanu, a dual British-Nigerian citizen, was arrested in Lagos in October by Nigerian intelligence agents during a visit from his home in London. Kanu leads the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), a separatist movement calling for the independence of the southeastern territories that made up Biafra in the late 1960s.
He denies all six of the charges against him, which include treasonable felony, a charge that carries a possible life sentence. The authorities essentially accuse Kanu of trying to overthrow the Nigerian head of state by broadcasting secessionist propaganda on Radio Biafra, the underground radio station he runs from London.
An oil-rich region about the size of the island of Ireland, the former Republic of Biafra has a history of turmoil and civil unrest. It existed as an independent republic for just two and a half years in the late 1960s, after millions of people—mainly from the southern Igbo ethnic group—led a movement to secede from the newly independent Nigeria, sparking the civil war of 1967 to 1970, which claimed more than 1 million lives.
Forty-six years after that war ended, Nigeria is again facing a potential uprising in the southeast. Since Kanu’s arrest in October, a protest movement has sprung up in Nigeria, with thousands of people identifying as Biafrans demonstrating in the streets across the southeast and as far north as Abuja to demand the release of their leader.
The demonstrations began peacefully but turned bloody in December: According to Associated Press reports, at least 22 protesters and two police officers have been killed in clashes at pro-Biafra rallies. The Nigerian government has not provided an official death toll, but Uchenna Asiegbu, a senior IPOB official, tells Newsweek that more than 100 civilians have died.
The rise in tensions between pro-Biafra activists and the Nigerian government comes at a time when Nigeria—Africa’s biggest economy and most populous nation—is grappling with serious challenges. In recent years, the country has struggled to quell an insurgency mounted by Boko Haram, a militant group that has killed an estimated 20,000 people since 2009 as it attempts to establish an Islamic state in northeast Nigeria.
Although President Muhammadu Buhari said in December that Boko Haram had been “technically” defeated, the group continues to attack civilians and security forces in Nigeria’s northeast. Meanwhile, militant groups in the oil-rich Niger Delta have been linked to a series of recent attacks on oil and gas facilities in the area, which was wracked by conflict in the mid-2000s.
A Nigerian Cabinet minister said in January that the attacks were costing the country $2.4 million a day. This instability in both the northeast and the south, combined with plummeting oil prices, has hammered Nigeria’s economy. (Oil revenue constitutes 35 percent of Nigeria’s gross domestic product, and 90 percent of the country’s export revenue comes from oil.) In December, Buhari said he expected the country’s budget deficit to double in 2016 and capital expenditures to triple, as the government tries to revive growth.
Now, as pro-Biafra groups step up their demands for a breakaway state, the Nigerian government has yet another challenge on its hands. Today’s pro-Biafra secessionist movement, led mainly by young people with no direct memory of the civil war, nevertheless shares some of the same concerns that sparked the original calls for independence. Nigeria was forged in 1914, when British colonialists cobbled together two territories, hoping to subsidize the poorer north with the resources of the oil-rich south. The borders of modern-day Nigeria did not reflect the ethnic boundaries of different rival kingdoms: the Igbos in the southeast, the Hausa-Fulani in the north and the Yoruba in the southwest.
After Nigeria declared itself independent of British colonial rule in 1960, regional and ethnic tensions erupted in a vicious power struggle. A coup against the northern-led government in January 1966—seen by the leaders and many people from the north of the country as a plot led by the Igbos—prompted the northerners to seize back power. Mobs from communities in the north of the country then killed tens of thousands of Igbos; many Igbos living in various parts of Nigeria fled to their eastern homeland.
The following year, military officer Odumegwu Ojukwu annexed the southeast and declared the independent Republic of Biafra. That marked the start of Nigeria’s bloody civil war, which ended in 1970 after Nigeria blockaded Biafra’s border and hundreds of thousands of people starved to death. The Biafran troops surrendered.
Nearly half a century later, many of the same rivalries and fears of persecution that set off the war still linger. After Nigeria returned to democratic rule in 1999 after decades of rule by military juntas—excluding one four-year stretch that began in 1979—the Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra was founded with the aim of restoring the state of Biafra.
But the IPOB, established 10 years later, has since become the premier pro-Biafra movement; it claims to have some 20 million members and 95 branches across the world. It has even opened its first Biafran embassy in northern Spain’s Basque country, chosen because of the region’s historic struggle for independence.
Kanu, who was elected IPOB leader in September 2015, has been hailed as the restorer of the Biafran nation. “Nnamdi Kanu is ordained to take us to the Biafran promised land,” says Asiegbu. “He is the chosen one.” Kanu’s critics say that the secessionist leader is a promoter of hate speech and propaganda.
At an event in May 2014 to commemorate the 1967 declaration of the Republic of Biafra, Kanu reportedly told a group of IPOB members and civil war veterans: “We shall fight until we get Biafra. If they don’t give us Biafra, no human being will remain alive in Nigeria by that time.” Nigeria’s president has said relatively little on the subject of Kanu’s arrest or the Biafran issue. I n December,
Buhari told journalists that Kanu had entered the country without a passport—a claim Kanu disputes. “There’s a treasonable felony against him, and I hope the court will listen to the case,” Buhari said. Since then, the president has kept silent, and the government has declined repeated requests from Newsweek for further comment.
With pro-Biafra protesters rallying around Kanu’s arrest, the outcome of the trial could heighten tensions between the activists and the government. “The significance of Kanu’s trial can only be determined by what follows after,” says Manji Cheto, an Africa analyst at U.K.-based risk consultancy Teneo Intelligence. “Should IPOB react violently, it could potentially be a tipping point for the Biafra agitation.”
Nnamdi Kanu Poisoned in DSS Custody – Chinasa Nworu
It has been confirmed by a member of the Directorate of state within the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Mazi Chinasa Nworu, that the Nigeria Department of State Services (DSS) have poisoned Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of IPOB. This news has caused widespread concern and fear for the safety and well-being of Kanu, who is currently being held in the DSS dungeon.
According to Nworu, Kanu sent a message complaining about his worsening health and the inadequate medical treatment he is receiving. He stated that he is being subjected to drug abuse, with medicine meant for a two-week period being given to him for only eight days. Additionally, Kanu has not been allowed to see a doctor since the second week of December and has been denied access to medical treatment despite complaining about his internal organs being badly affected.
Kanu also reported that he was hit on the left ear during the time he was being tortured before being extraordinarily renditioned from Kenya to Nigeria. He also reported that when he lies down, whatever he eats starts coming out of his mouth, which is a dangerous and unacceptable situation. He stated that he is afraid he may not survive due to the lack of medical attention.
In addition to the medical issues, Kanu also reported poor feeding, with the DSS only providing him with bread most times in the morning and night. This is not only inadequate, but also expensive.
@MaziNnamdiKanu Is The Victim And The @NigeriaGov Are The Aggressors. The Judge Said Discharge, Acquit, Compensate And Repatriate Nnamdi Kanu To Kenya But They Resort To Starving Him. @mfa_russia @netanyahu @HananyaNaftali @GiorgiaMeloni @GermanyDiplo Nobody Should Blame #IPOB pic.twitter.com/HhdpCYHSNf
— Ejike (@onyejikeemeuwa) January 27, 2023
The IPOB member of Directorate of state, Mazi Chinasa Nworu, has issued a warning that there will be no peace in Nigeria and Biafraland if anything happens to Mazi Nnamdi Kanu. Furthermore, the failure to release Kanu, as ordered by the court, will throw the nation into crisis and will make the upcoming elections irrelevant. Nworu also stated that the United States and United Kingdom may now go ahead and deny IPOB members visas to their countries as they will not stand idly by and watch their leader die in the hands of the Nigerian government.
Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of the IPOB, was extraordinary renditioned from Kenya to Nigeria in 2021, after he escaped a military assassination attempt known as “Operation Python Dance” in September 2017. However, a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, the capital of Nigeria, had already discharged and acquitted him, ordered for him to be compensated and repatriated back to Kenya. Despite this, the Nigerian government has blatantly disobeyed their own laws and is resorting to killing Kanu through illegal detention and denial of proper medical care.
This information, along with Mazi Nnamdi Kanu’s own reports of inadequate medication, drug abuse, and poor feeding, paint a disturbing picture of the conditions he is being held in. It is essential that the Nigerian government immediately release Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, as ordered by the court, and provide him with the medical attention he urgently needs. Furthermore, the international community, including the United States and the United Kingdom, should take note of the grave human rights violations being committed by the Nigerian government and take action accordingly.
The IPOB has made it clear that there will be no peace in Nigeria and Biafraland if anything happens to Mazi Nnamdi Kanu and failure to release him as ordered by the court will throw the nation into crisis. The upcoming election, which many people have put their hopes in, will be rendered meaningless if this situation is not immediately addressed. Biafrans must arise and demand the release of their leader, or they risk inviting anarchy to their doorsteps.
MNK Speaks From Captivity Urges IPOB To Remain Resolute
Barrister Aloy Ejimako visited the detained leader of IPOB Mazi Nnamdi Kanu at DSS headquarters in Abuja earlier today. According to him, incarceration is tough but Mazi Nnamdi Kanu is tougher. He said Kanu urges Biafrans to be tough and maintain their ground. In his own words, I had the opportunity to visit with #MNK, and the topics covered during our meeting were incredibly enlightening. Firstly, we discussed the appeal that is currently pending before the Supreme Court. MNK shared his thoughts on the matter and his hopes for a favorable outcome.
Furthermore, I was able to update MNK on the latest cases I had filed on his behalf last week. The situation of detention can be incredibly difficult, but MNK’s strength and determination in the face of adversity is truly impressive. He urged all of us to maintain our positions and be just as tough as he is.
It was particularly striking to hear Onyendu express his steadfast commitment to the Biafra restoration movement. He emphasized the importance of continuing to push for this cause, even in the face of obstacles and challenges.
Additionally, I filed a suit against the Attorney General of the Federation, Malami, last week. The suit aims to put an end to any further defamatory publications that Onyendu #MNK jumped bail. Such publications are highly prejudicial and injurious to MNK’s other cases pending in various courts, and it is essential that they come to an end.
Overall, my visitation with MNK was incredibly valuable, and I left feeling inspired and motivated to continue fighting for his rights and the Biafra restoration movement. It is clear that Onyendu is a remarkable individual who is dedicated to his cause and determined to overcome any obstacles in his path.
Furthermore, MNK also spoke about the importance of unity and solidarity within the Biafra restoration movement. He emphasized that it is essential for all members of the movement to work together and support one another in order to achieve our common goal. He also urged us to be vigilant and stay informed about the latest developments in the movement, and to take action when necessary.
MNK’s words were incredibly powerful and provided a much-needed boost of inspiration and motivation. His determination and resolve in the face of adversity is truly admirable and serves as a reminder of the importance of standing up for what we believe in.
Last week, I filed a Suit against AGF Malami to stop him from making any further defamatory publication that Onyendu #MNK jumped bail. Such publication is highly prejudicial & injurious to MNK’s other cases pending in various courts. It has to stop! pic.twitter.com/UmGgCHKDEa
— aloy ejimakor (@AloyEjimakor) January 17, 2023
It was a privilege to be able to speak with MNK and hear his thoughts on the current state of the Biafra restoration movement. His words will undoubtedly inspire others to join the cause and fight for the rights of the people of Biafra.
In conclusion, the visitation with MNK was a valuable and enlightening experience. It was clear that MNK is a strong and determined individual who is committed to the Biafra restoration movement. His words were powerful and inspiring, and serve as a reminder of the importance of standing up for what we believe in. The fight for Biafra restoration is one that requires unity, solidarity and determination, and with a leader like MNK at the helm, we can be confident that we will eventually achieve our goal.
Fulani Terrorists Continues Their Genocidal Massacre In Ebonyi
Again, Fulani Terror herdsmen sponsored, armed, and guarded by Nigeria Fulani-led federal government has continued their genocidal massacre of Biafrans in Ebonyi.
According to a viral video online, a reporter can be heard saying that the Fulani Terrorists are not relenting in the quest to kill everyone in Ebonyi state.
This is about the 4th time in the last 6 months that Fulani terrorists have gone on the large-scale slaughter of Ebonyi people.
He called on Eastern Security Network(ESN) to come to the aid of the Ebonyi people. ESN was formed by the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu to safeguard Biafrans against marauding Fulani terrorists.
This is the reason why we need #ESN.
Anybody on Uniform in Biafraland is a terrorist. pic.twitter.com/P9l7mfD9Ec
— IPOB FINEST 20K HANDS (@20kIpob) June 7, 2021
However, the Governor of Ebonyi State, Dave Umahi has been against the formation of ESN and has been working assiduously to eliminate ESN personnel from Ebonyi instead of supporting them.
This led to the creation of the Ebubeagu Security Network to fight the ESN in Ebonyi and other Eastern states. Ebubeagu has never and does not have the capacity to confront Fulani Terror Herdsmen wielding automatic assault rifles given to them by the Nigerian government.
Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe’s Speech At Mississippi, USA..
“What I will say here today may come as a surprise to many of you. For those that I will rub the wrong way, I apologize in advance.
However, “NDIGBO si na owu onye nke mmadu na ghu ya ahu na agbata ukwu”. If I fail to say the truth about the existential challenges that we face today in our country Nigeria, and how we believe we should face them, then I would not be true to myself and to you who sent me to represent you in the red chamber.
From the Past to Today.
We can situate our position today following the end of the civil war in 1970. Igbo’s in 1970 were impoverished having lost an estimated 3m Igbo souls in the war, with a ruined and destroyed landscape and infrastructure.
Every Igbo man/woman with savings in the banks before the outbreak of hostilities were pauperized as the military government decreed that one would only get 20 pounds notwithstanding the amount you had. The indigenization decree was passed in 1972 and no Igbo could participate since all had been reduced to penury.
Today the Igbo have the largest pool of educated Nigerians. In 2007, Imo State had more subscribers to the JAMB UTME exams than the 19 Northern States put together.
In 2017, 56% of of NYSC members are from the South East. Our feat in education means that we now have the army to win the war of competition in a market driven economy. Since 1999, the south east states have been the best in all exams.
The largest group of direct domestic investors in Nigeria are from the south east. Igbo investments in property in Abuja alone probably has more than any other ethnic group. We are the most travelled in Nigeria.
In all parts of Nigeria after the indigenous population, Igbo’s are the next largest group. We are the largest propertied class of all ethnic groups in Nigeria and despite all this confusion, we have grown the most economically since the inception of the current democracy in Nigeria.
We have the richest and largest pool of Nigeria diaspora population. Taking an example of Lagos state, Ndigbo form a large proportion of the economy of the state. We created the following from nothing;
- Computer Village in Ikeja.
- Ladipo Spare Parts market.
- Alaba Electronic Market.
- Balogun Int’l Market.
- Balogun (Trade Fair) International Market
- Aspamda market in Festac.
- Orile Market for house fittings & appliances etc
- All second hand clothing markets in Lagos. About 4 markets
The combined turnover daily of these markets run into billions daily. Lagos state benefits by collecting taxes and now its economy contributes 56% of all VAT collected in Nigeria.
Above scenario is replicated in most big cities in Nigeria. Go to Kano, Port Harcourt, Benin City, Kaduna, Sokoto, not to talk of Abuja. Ndigbo are very large players in the economy of all parts of Nigeria. I will return to this.
The ALLURE of BIAFRA
So the question is, given all the advantages that we as Ndigbo have in Nigeria, why the clamour by our youths and others for a separate state of Biafra?
The present agitation in the SouthEast for a sovereign state of Biafra seems very tempting under the prevailing circumstance given the manifest sectional approach to governance at the center.
To some especially the youth and the disadvantaged it is the way to go and when viewed critically you cannot help but to agree with the agitators.
Of a truth there is an obvious feeling of alienation within the Nigerian state today. But has this always been the case? Apart from the civil war and the pernicious policies of the military regimes, we have not fared badly during civil rule until presently.
Given that following the civil war, there seemed to have been a glass ceiling in certain professions in Nigeria where it looked as if Igbo should not aspire to. In the police, military etc.
But we can posit this as the lingering effects of the war where the victor in a war finds it very difficult to fully integrate the other part they fought with into all areas. In the US for example, I understand that it took a very long time for someone from the southern part of the US several decades after the civil war which they lost to break the stranglehold of the north for the presidency of the US. (Correct me if I’m wrong).
But come to think of it, Dr Alex Ekwueme became the Vice President of Nigeria barely 9 years after the civil war. The glass ceiling was on its way to being broken! The military interregnum from 1993 led by the same Muhammadu Buhari put a hold on this. In the US, Germany, Japan and other climes deliberate policies were used by governments to build stronger ties among groups and opposing tendencies.
This helped to forge a bond within their nations. Nigeria seemed to think that a policy of benign neglect will resolve our problems. Of course it didn’t and that’s why we are seeing a resurgence of separatist agitation going on all over the country.
Fast forward to the civil rule era starting from 1999. Nobody would accuse Presidents Obasanjo, late Yar’adua, or Jonathan of what seemed like sectionalism as state policy.
A look at the pattern of appointments by President Obasanjo evinced the fact of an all inclusive government from all parts of the country. Same as President Yar’adua. President Jonathan took it a step further by appointing the first Igbo chief of army staff, first Igbo secretary to the federal government, coordinating minister for the economy etc.
In fact, one of the criticisms we face today in Nigeria is to explain why should this agitation for separation be under President Buhari when it was not done under the previous administration?
However, that criticism is not true. Recall that under President Obasanjo and Yar’adua there was Massob which was managed much better than today.
However, you will recall that when this government came into place, President Buhari went to the US where he made a most unfortunate statement that was widely condemned at that time.
He reportedly said that he doesn’t need to bother about the 5% that didn’t vote for him but will rather concern himself with the 97% that voted for him.
I had at the time the statement was made raised concern that such declaration from an elected President sounds discriminatory and may create the impression that our elected President Buhari is sending a message to those who didn’t vote for him that he will be partial in his decision making.
Unfortunately, it seems also that the people who are in and around the president didn’t advise him properly. They left him to make appointments and take decisions that gave the impression that there are some parts of the country that are not supposed to be part of Nigeria.
Little wonder that our youths feeling left out and not having anything to give them hope in Nigeria, started believing that a separate country would be better. But I say it is NOT. I will come to this later.
I recall that in November of 2016, after seeing how things were going, the South East caucus of the Senate sought for and got an appointment with the President Buhari.
Our discussion centered on the south East perception of not being part of this administration thereby giving rise to our people feeling disconnected from the government.
We pointed out that it should be a cause for concern if a major part of the country is not represented in the security architecture of the country in addition to other critical sectors from the inception of the administration.
We were promised that our concerns would be looked into. Sadly, this was not done till today. Our country Nigeria is supposed to be for inclusion; for making sure that everyone makes his or her input into its affairs.
Allowing such fairness and equity to prevail in a plural society like ours will make us a bigger and better nation. Today that is not the case.
Either as a deliberate act as it seems or a willful omission geared towards achieving a pre-determined goal, Ndigbo have been pushed to the fringes of the Nigerian Union in so many ways by the present government.
The unfortunate scenario is enough for one to ask the hypothetical question….why am I here?
As much as the music of separatism stirs the soul, one must ask the question; Is relapsing into a sovereign state of Biafra the optimum option or is it a restructuring of the state such that all the federating units would have greater autonomy in the mould of a near quasi self determination the better option?
When these two options are posed; a sovereign state of Biafra or restructured Nigeria, the position of most Nigerians as of today is for the latter.
See How Mohammadu Buhari Is Looting Nigeria Bankrupt
Apart from the problem of even determining the boundaries of the state of Biafra and the multifarious and multifaceted problems a simplistic solution such as Biafra poses, perhaps it makes more sense for those who have tasted war to be a little more discerning when matters affecting their race comes up in Nigeria.
Nigerians have been known to come together to use the Igbo head to break coconuts (apologies to late Abiola). Despite the problems that befell the Yoruba race following the annulment of the June 12 elections, they didn’t seek to break out out of Nigeria despite some of them calling for an Oduduwa country.
They simply used the sympathies of other Nigerians to create an economic haven for themselves which has led to massive relocation of industries by all Nigerians to Lagos and Ogun States.
They also got the Presidency of Nigeria. Our brothers from the Niger Delta have not sought to go away either. They also got the Presidency of Nigeria. However we seem to be in the unfortunate position of seeming to drag the Niger Delta into a Biafra unwanted by them.
The agitation for Biafra and how it was being prosecuted by IPOB has rather elicited hate and disdain for our people from other ethnic groups notwithstanding that they may have been nursing such tendencies.
The agitation as championed by IPOB somehow gave muscle to traditional traducers of Ndigbo to spew out hate and envious vituperations. This was exemplified by the October 1st quit notice given to Igbos to leave the North by the so-called Arewa youths which persons are yet to be arrested for hate speech and breaching the law.
They claimed to be responding to our own hate speeches etc. Indeed, other people seem to want to see us fall into the trap for them to use us to solve their own problems with Nigeria.
That notwithstanding, we as political leaders from the South East were unequivocal in asserting that that the rights of Ndigbo to peaceful and democratic engagements must be respected.
On this score we made it clear that no amount of threat will cow Ndigbo from consistently demanding for an equitable, fair and just society within the Nigerian State.
We also cautioned our youths on their vituperative calls and employed the Igbo concept of “bu uzo chu fuo Ufu, tutu ta wa Okuko uta”! This of course was misunderstood by other Nigerians as support rather than constructive engagement.
WHY NOT BIAFRA?
We believe that the best way to go given our situation today is to look before we leap. We must not be pushed to abandon our huge contribution to the modern Nigerian state.
As we pointed out in the beginning of this paper, Ndigbo have been the single ethnic group that have welded the country Nigeria together given our way of life as sojourners everywhere in Nigeria, West Africa, Africa and the world.
I dare say that we make up to 50% or more of Nigerians in the US. The question is why would we look to confine ourselves to a small landlocked entity when we have the whole of Nigeria to cavort in?
I have deliberately left out of this discussion the practical impossibility of even getting our brothers from the Niger Delta to go with us in this quest. Not to talk of the Idoma or the Kogi that we insist are part of us.
One thing seems to elude our people when these questions are posed. We look at the determination of the present government to treat us dismissively and feel that it is well nigh an impossible task to get our wish for a just society but we fail to look at the historical evidence before us.
When the 97% vs 5% controversy erupted, I told our people that my people the Ngwa says that “Ohu afor abughi ndu ebighi ebi”. Governments come and go. PDP government lost election and quit the stage for this APC government.
Who says they cannot also lose? Why are we then acting as if it’s the end of the world? The maximum any government can stay is two term totaling 8yrs. “Obughi ndu ebighi ebi”!
Restructuring is an idea whose time has come and it will happen. Biafra should be a last option, only after every other avenue to realize a restructured Nigeria where every component part is allowed a measure of autonomy and self determination fails.
Let me state here that if the dominant views in Nigeria is for restructuring, then that should be the minimum that Ndigbo should demand, so that every component part of this country can substantially harness its resources and develop at its own pace.
Do not forget that the breached Aburi accord was about restructuring and today this call has garnered overwhelming momentum even from quarters that hitherto opposed it.
Just recently former President Ibrahim Babangida, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar and lately Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and a host of others have joined the fray.
Restructuring has become a singsong which we must explore vigorously. Even the ruling APC has set up a committee led by Governor el-Rufai to bring about a considered view on it. Forget the fact that it was part of their manifesto. The fact is that the discussion is on, as it should be.
I recall that in August, the Igbo political elite, Ohaneze, Governors, National Assembly Caucus met in Enugu and affirmed that the terms of our marriage in Nigeria is stifling to everybody and therefore we must have another look at it.
That position has not changed but has in fact been reinforced by the agreement by other parts of Nigeria that it is time to look at the matter as evidenced by the South West Political Summit where they endorsed restructuring back to the 1963 constitution.
To me the strident calls by IPOB for a referendum should be seen as a legitimate demand to compel the state to see the urgency of having a second look at our marriage, with the ultimate aim of enthroning equity and fairness, where our people will no longer be treated as second class citizens in Nigeria.
Though the methods may be misconstrued, the true colour of the agitation would have come out had there been a concerted effort at dialogue. The agitations gives fillip to the Igbo idiom…”Ma Opara emeghi nkpotu, agaghi ilughi ya Nwanyi “.
Our people are saying this union is stifling us, and we are making a lot of noise so we can find a solution.
The solution I think can be found in a restructured Nigeria.
The beauty of it is that while we can enjoy near wholesale autonomy, our people as itinerant business people could have an unrestrained space in a larger market provided by a united Nigeria.
We should not be swayed by what we think is the attraction of an exclusive opportunity to be provided by a sovereign Biafra. No. That would box us into a tiny corner which has its own challenges which would prove overwhelming as time goes on. This is a topic for another day.
DIASPORA IGBOS AND US.
One of the problems those of us who attempt to show a direction to our people at home is the near universal disdain that some of our brother Ndigbo in Diaspora have for our leaders and elected representatives at home.
Nowhere is it more apposite than in this matter of Biafra agitation. While some of our brothers/sisters here in the comfort of their homes seems to urge our youths through their utterances and actions to use unconstitutional means and disparage other ethnic groups that which actions seems to alienate us from our neighbors and the Nigerian State, we the leaders at home have been been left with the task of intervening in such a manner to dissuade the government from deploying the coercive instruments of state against the agitators.
The aim was to stop bloodshed and waste of human lives. We have lost enough from the civil war. Those egging our youths on from here do not seem to appreciate this fact.
Most distressing is the labeling of those who disagree with their positions as “cowards, saboteurs, Hausa slaves etc”. This tends to discourage those who genuinely strive to lead our people through a very distressing period in our history as a nation.
Nnia Nwodo as President of Ohaneze has been vilified for taking a stand for restructuring in Nigeria for Ndigbo, a position agreed by all of us in the earlier summit I referenced.
Governors come in for bashing everyday. As for us legislators, we have been called all sorts of names such as ‘legislooters’ etc.
Yet, when it came to taking a stand at ground zero, to bail Kanu; to reject the Fed Govt ascribing Terrorism to IPOB, we are the people doing so and we never hesitated to say that agitation in every clime is constitutional.
We take the bullets from other ethnic groups and the government for standing firm and demanding that Nigerians should be left to talk to each other about the best way forward without preconditions.
We would use this opportunity plead with our internet warriors who stay here in their comfort zone here that our Igbo say, “ma Opara nzuzu adighi nwuo, Opara ma izu aga beghi ibichi ezi”.
SOME FINAL THOUGHTS
Why are we not Investing at Home? Lack of Infrastructure. Should we continue to blame the Fed Govt for the dilapidated infrastructures in Ala Igbo? What of our home governments in Igbo States? Sam Mbakwe of blessed memory did not wait for the Fed Govt before undertaking massive rebuilding of old IMO State.
We think that we have not given our best to our people with the little we got. Insecurity. Nowhere have we hurt ourselves and investment in Ala Igbo than in the insecurity pervading all parts of our homeland.
Of course the latest imbroglio in Abia especially in Aba and Umuahia has worsened matters. We run the risk of undoing all the efforts made in promoting ‘made in Aba’ that we had embarked on as a catalyst for growth in Ala Igbo.
Industries have relocated from Ala Igbo to other parts of Nigeria especially Lagos and Ogun States because of the very serious insecurity such as kidnappining and armed robbery faced by those who invest at home.
We cannot be looking for investors and yet make our place not conducive to investment. Unemployment is the single biggest problem we have in Ala Igbo today.
Before this time due to our domestic investments and industry, this was not a very big problem but due to the dis-investment going on today in Ala Igbo today we are faced with a existential problem in our hand.
Diaspora Igbo’s have to assist us to also invest at home despite the problems and reduce the unemployment in Ala Igbo. Once we get Ala Igbo right the frustrations that fuel the agitation in ala Igbo will be dampened.
What we have playing out in the world today is a knowledge economy. Oil is going out of fashion. As I pointed out earlier, we are poised through out educational exploits in Nigeria to dominate the economy of tomorrow.
Why would we turn a blind eye to this emerging scenario? In ending let me quote what the great son of Igbo land, the great Zik of Africa said about himself….”despite the mythic heights to which he was raised, Azikiwe was nothing if not pragmatic, a realist, always conscious of his limits and ever eager to extract all that was possible from that limited horizon”.
May we be guided by such humble thoughts as we seek a better Nigeria for us all. What we should look for is a BIAFRA of the MIND like some have suggested in order to play our role in the emerging Nigeria that will come…
Monkey Pox – Is Nigeria Military Using Biological Weapon Against The Biafrans?
Monkey Pox epidemic that started in Bayelsa has spread to River State and Akwa Ibom State. The Indigenes of these states are accusing the Federal Government of Nigeria of having injected the virus to them via recent Immunization exercise allegedly carried out by the Nigeria military in the affected areas.
People from the affected areas took to social media pointing accusing fingers on the Nigerian Military using the virus as a form of biological warfare against them.
However, the reason for the allegation is not far fetched, given that the Nigerian Military and Police, who are 99% Huasa-Fulanis, has been killing people from such areas in large numbers in recent times because of a peaceful call for referendum.
These Biafrans believe beyond reasonable doubt that the Nigerian government introduced the Biological Weapon of warfare as a means of ethnic cleansing to further deplete their population.
They cite the notorious Kunle and Alhaji telephone conversation, where the Northerner revealed their plan to decimate the Biafrans and form a North West regional development plan.
“The Ahaji in the conversation boasted that after 4 years of Buhari’s administration, that the Biafrans will be irrelevant in the scheme of things. And the contents of that phone conversation, like a self fulfilling prophesy, is exactly what is unfolding before our eyes today,” on of them commented on social media.
Listen to the phone conversation below.
Some allude to fact that vaccination was given by the Nigerian government in the area just two weeks before the outbread of the fear inspiring Monkey Pox.
Below is some of the comments and posts by People of the affected areas on social media.
So the Nigerian government invented the #MonkeyPox and decided to test it in Southeast.
The biggest project of APC in SE after the genocide
— Onuoha (@mexiew) October 8, 2017
I REPEAT,THOSE RECEIVING MEDICARE FRM NIGERIA ARMY SHOULD BE WARE OF MONKEY POX,NOTHING GOOD COME FRM NGR GOVT!!!
— Uwa Turns (@UwaTurns) October 8, 2017
Being educated is indeed beyond speaking good English. How can some1 in right frame of mind believe that it is FG who induced monkey pox???
— aminu aliyu (@aminualiyu11) October 8, 2017
— VOFN Bayelsa (@VOFNBayelsa) October 8, 2017
Nigeria govt exterminating Biafrans through Army’s free medical care.
— Candi-Boi (@PFreshwine) October 8, 2017
Meanwhile, here is what the World Health Organization (WHO) has to say about the Monkey Pox Epidemics
- Monkeypox is a rare disease that occurs primarily in remote parts of Central and West Africa, near tropical rainforests.
- The monkeypox virus can cause a fatal illness in humans and, although it is similar to human smallpox which has been eradicated, it is much milder.
- The monkeypox virus is transmitted to people from various wild animals but has limited secondary spread through human-to-human transmission.
- Typically, case fatality in monkeypox outbreaks has been between 1% and 10%, with most deaths occurring in younger age groups.
There is no treatment or vaccine available although prior smallpox vaccination was highly effective in preventing monkeypox as well.
Monkeypox is a rare viral zoonosis (a virus transmitted to humans from animals) with symptoms in humans similar to those seen in the past in smallpox patients, although less severe. Smallpox was eradicated in 1980.However, monkeypox still occurs sporadically in some parts of Africa.
Monkeypox is a member of the Orthopoxvirus genus in the family Poxviridae.
The virus was first identified in the State Serum Institute in Copenhagen, Denmark, in 1958 during an investigation into a pox-like disease among monkeys.
Human monkeypox was first identified in humans in 1970 in the Democratic Republic of Congo (then known as Zaire) in a 9 year old boy in a region where smallpox had been eliminated in 1968. Since then, the majority of cases have been reported in rural, rainforest regions of the Congo Basin and western Africa, particularly in the Democratic Republic of Congo, where it is considered to be endemic. In 1996-97, a major outbreak occurred in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
In the spring of 2003, monkeypox cases were confirmed in the Midwest of the United States of America, marking the first reported occurrence of the disease outside of the African continent. Most of the patients had had close contact with pet prairie dogs.
In 2005, a monkeypox outbreak occurred in Unity, Sudan and sporadic cases have been reported from other parts of Africa. In 2009, an outreach campaign among refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo into the Republic of Congo identified and confirmed two cases of monkeypox. Between August and October 2016, a monkeypox outbreak in the Central African Republic was contained with 26 cases and two deaths.
Infection of index cases results from direct contact with the blood, bodily fluids, or cutaneous or mucosal lesions of infected animals. In Africa human infections have been documented through the handling of infected monkeys, Gambian giant rats and squirrels, with rodents being the major reservoir of the virus. Eating inadequately cooked meat of infected animals is a possible risk factor.
Secondary, or human-to-human, transmission can result from close contact with infected respiratory tract secretions, skin lesions of an infected person or objects recently contaminated by patient fluids or lesion materials. Transmission occurs primarily via droplet respiratory particles usually requiring prolonged face-to-face contact, which puts household members of active cases at greater risk of infection. Transmission can also occur by inoculation or via the placenta (congenital monkeypox). There is no evidence, to date, that person-to-person transmission alone can sustain monkeypox infections in the human population.
In recent animal studies of the prairie dog-human monkeypox model, two distinct clades of the virus were identified – the Congo Basin and the West African clades – with the former found to be more virulent.
Signs and symptoms
The incubation period (interval from infection to onset of symptoms) of monkeypox is usually from 6 to 16 days but can range from 5 to 21 days.
The infection can be divided into two periods:
the invasion period (0-5 days) characterized by fever, intense headache, lymphadenopathy (swelling of the lymph node), back pain, myalgia (muscle ache) and an intense asthenia (lack of energy);
the skin eruption period (within 1-3 days after appearance of fever) where the various stages of the rash appears, often beginning on the face and then spreading elsewhere on the body. The face (in 95% of cases), and palms of the hands and soles of the feet (75%) are most affected. Evolution of the rash from maculopapules (lesions with a flat bases) to vesicles (small fluid-filled blisters), pustules, followed by crusts occurs in approximately 10 days. Three weeks might be necessary before the complete disappearance of the crusts.
The number of the lesions varies from a few to several thousand, affecting oral mucous membranes (in 70% of cases), genitalia (30%), and conjunctivae (eyelid) (20%), as well as the cornea (eyeball).
Some patients develop severe lymphadenopathy (swollen lymph nodes) before the appearance of the rash, which is a distinctive feature of monkeypox compared to other similar diseases.
Monkeypox is usually a self-limited disease with the symptoms lasting from 14 to 21 days. Severe cases occur more commonly among children and are related to the extent of virus exposure, patient health status and severity of complications.
People living in or near the forested areas may have indirect or low-level exposure to infected animals, possibly leading to subclinical (asymptomatic) infection.
The case fatality has varied widely between epidemics but has been less than 10% in documented events, mostly among young children. In general, younger age-groups appear to be more susceptible to monkeypox.
The differential diagnoses that must be considered include other rash illnesses, such as, smallpox, chickenpox, measles, bacterial skin infections, scabies, syphilis, and medication-associated allergies. Lymphadenopathy during the prodromal stage of illness can be a clinical feature to distinguish it from smallpox.
Monkeypox can only be diagnosed definitively in the laboratory where the virus can be identified by a number of different tests:
enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA)
antigen detection tests
polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay
virus isolation by cell culture
Treatment and vaccine
There are no specific treatments or vaccines available for monkeypox infection, but outbreaks can be controlled. Vaccination against smallpox has been proven to be 85% effective in preventing monkeypox in the past but the vaccine is no longer available to the general public after it was discontinued following global smallpox eradication. Nevertheless, prior smallpox vaccination will likely result in a milder disease course.
Natural host of monkeypox virus
In Africa, monkeypox infection has been found in many animal species: rope squirrels, tree squirrels, Gambian rats, striped mice, dormice and primates. Doubts persist on the natural history of the virus and further studies are needed to identify the exact reservoir of the monkeypox virus and how it is maintained in nature.
In the USA, the virus is thought to have been transmitted from African animals to a number of susceptible non-African species (like prairie dogs) with which they were co-housed.
Preventing monkeypox expansion through restrictions on animal trade
Restricting or banning the movement of small African mammals and monkeys may be effective in slowing the expansion of the virus outside Africa.
Captive animals should not be inoculated against smallpox. Instead, potentially infected animals should be isolated from other animals and placed into immediate quarantine. Any animals that might have come into contact with an infected animal should be quarantined, handled with standard precautions and observed for monkeypox symptoms for 30 days.
Reducing the risk of infection in people
During human monkeypox outbreaks, close contact with other patients is the most significant risk factor for monkeypox virus infection. In the absence of specific treatment or vaccine, the only way to reduce infection in people is by raising awareness of the risk factors and educating people about the measures they can take to reduce exposure to the virus. Surveillance measures and rapid identification of new cases is critical for outbreak containment.
Public health educational messages should focus on the following risks:
Reducing the risk of human-to-human transmission. Close physical contact with monkeypox infected people should be avoided. Gloves and protective equipment should be worn when taking care of ill people. Regular hand washing should be carried out after caring for or visiting sick people.
Reducing the risk of animal-to-human transmission. Efforts to prevent transmission in endemic regions should focus on thoroughly cooking all animal products (blood, meat) before eating. Gloves and other appropriate protective clothing should be worn while handling sick animals or their infected tissues, and during slaughtering procedures.
Controlling infection in health-care settings
Health-care workers caring for patients with suspected or confirmed monkeypox virus infection, or handling specimens from them, should implement standard infection control precautions.
Healthcare workers and those treating or exposed to patients with monkeypox or their samples should consider being immunized against smallpox via their national health authorities. Older smallpox vaccines should not be administered to people with comprised immune systems.
Samples taken from people and animals with suspected monkeypox virus infection should be handled by trained staff working in suitably equipped laboratories.
WHO supports Member States with surveillance, preparedness and outbreak response activities in affected countries.
Also Watch: Biafrans Present Coffin To Nigeria Embassy Abroad
Nigerian Army In Fresh Trouble As CCTV Caught Them Looting Kanu’s Home
Again the Nigerian Army invaded the home of the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra looting items from the home. The incident was caught on hidden cameras careful planted at Nnamdi Kanu’s home.
The Nigerian army on Sunday, October 8, reportedly stormed the home of the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi kanu.
According to several reports, including a claim by the former minister of aviation, Fani Kayode, the army carted away some personal belongings of the IPOB leader.
The army trucks allegedly parked outside Kanu’s house. Photo credit: Francis Rosevelt He wrote: “UPDATE…!!! The Nigerian soldiers are currently moving away every property in the compound of Mazi Nnamdi kanu, including mattresses clothes, generators, televisions into their trucks!!! Share this now!!!”
Another video showing the raid in kanu’s home.
Nigerian Police admit IPOB was not responsible for burning down the Mosque in Enugu
IPOB has denied ever burning a mosque at Igboeze North Local Government Area of Enugu State, saying it was not a violent organisation.
It further said it has no quarrel with Muslims in the country or elsewhere and as such had no reason to burn down their place of worship, as alleged by the enemy.
Confrming IPOB’s position, Enugu State Police Command, yesterday, warned residents against spreading rumour and blatant lies capable of jeopardizing existing peace in the state.
The state’s Police Public Relations Officer, SP Ebere Amaraizu, gave the warning in a statement in Enugu.
He, however, said that contrary to the claims, preliminary investigations showed that electrical power surge was responsible for the inferno at the mosque.
He said: “The issue is that there was an incident and that incident involved inferno.
“When we first heard about it, we moved in with a view to finding out what actually happened.The incident happened at the wee hours of Saturday, September 16 at about 2 a.m.
“When we got there, following our preliminary investigations, we discovered that it could have been as a result of power surge.
“However, the following morning, we started hearing all sorts of things that are blatant lies.
“We need to put things in their proper perspective to avoid mixing up issues.”
Nigerian Police Burnt The Police Station In Aba To Implicate IPOB
A high ranking Officer of the Nigeria from zone 9 Umuahia has claimed that Nigerian Army and Police set the Police station on fire Aba, destroyed the Yoruba mosque and organized irate youths asking for Hausas in a commuter Bus.
The Officer who pleaded anonymity said he started having sympathy for IPOB after witnessing the brutal mass killings, rape, abductions and subsequent blackmail of Indigenous People Of Biafra (IPOB) by the Nigerian army on ‘Operation Python Dance II.
He said a combine team of the Nigeria army and Police were responsible for the acts in order to have evidence for branding IPOB a terrorist organization and subsequently proscribing it.
According to the Nigerian Police officer who pleaded anonymity in a message sent to Afroinsider Facebook Page, ” in a meeting with the 5 state governors of the South East and Some senators in Enugu on 8th of September 2017, it was agreed that a means should be devised to impicate IPOB. They must be stopped by any means possible to hold Anambra elections,” the officer stated.
“This we hoped to accomplish by destroying the Yoruba Mosque at Azikiwe by Asa Road Aba. The aim was to create hatred and animosity between Yorubas and Igbos. This move was expected to cut off any relationship between the Yoruba Freedom Fighters and The Biafrans.
Secondly, it was expected to caused a wide spread indignation against the Indigenous People Of Biafra, there by justifying tagging them a terrorist organization,” he added.
About a video making rounds on social media, the officer has this to say “The video showing some boys asking if there was any Hausa person in a commuter bus was equally made by us to make the world believe that IPOB was actually lynching Hausas and Yorubas in Aba. This we thought will justify the inhuman torture and mass killings of Biafrans by the Nigerian Army”
Meanwhile, IPOB has remained peaceful and resolute despite the on-going brutal mass killings, rape, abductions and blackmail in Biafraland.
The Disappearance Of IPOB leader Nnamdi Kanu Is Troubling – WikiLeaks Boss, Julian Assange
JULIAN ASSANGE, the fearless WikiLeaks boss has joined a myriad of other world leaders in asking the Nigerian government the whereabouts of IPOB leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.
The embattled IPOB leader was last seen on 11th of September as he was holding a press conference, telling the members of the Nigeria press that the Nigeria army attacked his home killing 3 persons while injuring many others.
A claim which Nigerian army vehemently denied. However the Nigerian army returned later that day and besieged Kanu’s home while killings, rapes and abductions by the Nigerian army were going on along the high ways leading to Kanu’s home.
Having killed and abducted an unknown number of persons in Aba, Obigbo and Umuahia, the Nigerian army returned to Kanu’s home killing about 30 persons, while bullets rips through the walls of Kanu’s home. His dog also was not spared as every living thing in that house was killed by the Nigerian army.
Ever since then, Kanu, the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra has not been sighted or heard.
Kanu’s lawyer, Barr. Ifeanyi Ejiofor and IPOB believe that the Nigerian army might have killed him or abducted him.
However, the International Community especially, the United States of America, The United Kingdom, the European Union has been asking the Nigeria government of the whereabout of the Biafran leader.
The latest of which is the tweet from the WikiLeaks boss, Julian Assange, in which he says that the EU and UK are right, that the dissappearance of the IPOB leader is troubling.
— Julian Assange ???? (@JulianAssange) October 4, 2017
— Ekpere Nwankwo (@EkpereNwankwo) October 4, 2017
— Nkiruka Nistoran (@NkirukaNistoran) October 4, 2017
Genocide against Biafrans for asking for referendum from the Islamic state of Nigeria! Call for referendum is not call for war! pic.twitter.com/UGaYaeRZzO
— Chinedu Onyeka (@edupeepy1) October 4, 2017
the Nigeria army went to the house of the leader of IPOB kill all his security men including the family dog
— Chiasraokwu Kakason (@mosesgodswill16) October 4, 2017
the Nigeria army went to the house of the leader of IPOB kill all his security men including the family dog
— Chiasraokwu Kakason (@mosesgodswill16) October 4, 2017
See What Late Muammar Gaddafi Told Asari Dokubo
Asaba Massacre, Radio Presenter Yanked Off-Air By Nigeria Broadcasting Commission (NBC)
A radio presenter with Nigeria Info FM, known as Chxta tweeted that while he was discussing Asaba Massacre earlier today, he got a call from the Nigerian Broadcasting Commission (NBC) to shut down the show.
What exactly is the Nigerian government scared of? Why is there so much panic on the corridors of power? The Jubrin, oh sorry Mbuhari led Nigerian government is working so hard to cover it’s atrocities.
Genocide was committed in Asaba and it has been succesfully hidden for 50 years.
I was on air discussing the #AsabaMassacre on this show, & a call came from the NBC.
"Shut the show down."
I've been kicked off the air. https://t.co/BTIX4aOE9G
— Chxta (@Chxta) October 4, 2017
Join @Chxta and @nellylaoni on the #MiddayDialogue today at 1 PM as we discuss the Asaba massacre and the unresolved scars of Biafra.
— Nigeria Info FM (@NigeriainfoFM) October 4, 2017
Was it not censored by Buhari led NBC to erase our history that is well known? #AsabaMassacre
— Nwadede (@DeclanIfeanyi) October 4, 2017
I have never seen it in this way before. This government is very "wonderful "
— Okala David CN (@DAVECARES) October 4, 2017
I really did enjoy the conversation, along the line, I couldn't hear the discussion anymore. Hope you don't mind a repeat broadcast. Cheers
— Brendan Unique (@Brencross) October 4, 2017
Probably it was on hold because of heightened tension concerning the biafra agitators so that it does escalate into something else.kudos
— Azodo Hycenth chifun (@zodoxohio) October 4, 2017
Really thought provoking,this is the first time i have heard,read or seen anything as it concerns stories of our war in the media,kudos
— nedu (@Nedu2000Nedu) October 4, 2017
Welcome to buhari's government
— Gloria Kalu (@kalu_gloria) October 4, 2017
In August 1967, three months into the Nigerian Civil War, Biafran troops invaded the Midwest Region, to the west of the River Niger. They spread west, taking Benin City and reaching as far as Ore, where they were pushed back by the Nigerian Second Division, under the command of Col. Murtala Muhammed.
The Federal troops gained the upper hand, and forced the Biafrans back to the Niger, where they crossed the bridge back into the Biafran city of Onitsha, which lies directly across from Asaba. The Biafrans blew up the eastern spans of the bridge, so that the Federal troops were unable to pursue them.
The Federal troops entered Asaba around October 5, and began ransacking houses and killing civilians, claiming they were Biafran sympathisers. Leaders summoned the townspeople to assemble on the morning of October 7, hoping to end the violence through a show of support for “One Nigeria.” Hundreds of men, women, and children, many wearing the ceremonial akwa ocha (white) attire paraded along the main street, singing, dancing, and chanting “One Nigeria.”
At a junction, men and teenage boys were separated from women and young children, and gathered in an open square at Ogbe-Osowa village. Federal troops revealed machine guns, and orders were given, reportedly by Second-in-Command, Maj. Ibrahim Taiwo, to open fire. It is estimated that more than 700 men and boys were killed, some as young as 12 years old, in addition to many more killed in the preceding days.
The bodies of some victims were retrieved by family members and buried at home. But most were buried in [mass grave]]s, without appropriate ceremony. Many extended families lost dozens of men and boys. Federal troops occupied Asaba for many months, during which time most of the town was destroyed, many women and girls were raped or forcibly “married,” and large numbers of citizens fled, often not returning until the war ended in 1970.
Ibrahim B. Haruna has sometimes been named as the officer who ordered the massacre, following a report of his testimony to the Nigerian Human Rights Violations Investigations Commission, known as the Oputa Panel. This article quoted him as claiming responsibility (as the commanding officer) and having no apology for the atrocity.
However, Haruna was not present in Asaba in 1967. He replaced Murtala Muhammed as C.O. of the Second Division in spring 1968. While there are no eye-witness reports of Muhammed ordering the killings, he was the Commander in the field, and thus must bear responsibility.
A comprehensive account of the massacre, its causes, consequences, and legacy, was published in August 2017: “The Asaba Massacre: Trauma, Memory, and the Nigerian Civil War,” by S. Elizabeth Bird and Fraser Ottanelli.
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