It has never been about Igbo. The war was never about Igbo. The Nigeria Biafra war was not about Igbo. It wasn’t because Igbos were selfish nor because they were power drunk or because they were domineering. No, no, no, a thousand times no! It was all about oil.
Oil was the focus. Oil was the reason Nigeria slaughtered about 5million Biafrans and same oil was the reason the United kingdom supported that genocide. Oil was the reason the United States supplied Nigeria with arms. Oil was the reason Russia backed up Nigeria in their stand to kill more Biafrans. Oil was the reason France abandoned Biafra at the middle of the war to turn around and support Nigeria with weapons and armunitions. It was all about oil not Igbo.
But why did the Nigeria media always portray Igbo as the reason instead of oil or portray Ojukwu as the evil one instead of themselves? Why did they convince our parents that Igbo was our problem and that Igbo was after our oil? Why did they have to set us at per against our Igbo brothers for this long and desire that we remain so forever? Why, why, why and why?
The answer is simple, it was because of oil. Okay, if it was because of oil, what has Igbo got to do with oil to the extent that they were ready to exterminate the whole Igbo race when the oil is mostly found in Ijaw land at the time of the war?
Now, let’s discuss
At the time of the war which was in the sixties, Ijaw ethnic nation shared two regions with Igbo which were found in the East and Midwest regions which were both East of the Yoruba region (Western region).
But Igbo was mostly found in the eastern region at the time and made up the majority ethnic nation in that region. Being the major group in the region, they had the loudest voice in the region and the voice of others were subject to theirs being majority which was normal.
When oil was discovered in large quantity, it was discovered in Ijaw land (Oloibiri) in same LGA that Produced Nigeria’s ex President Goodluck Jonathan. It was discovered in the region where Igbos were the majority ethnic nation. So because Igbo was the major group in the region that produced the oil, they became:
THE VOICE OF THE OIL.
Because the country then ran a regional system, so whosoever is the voice of the region is the voice of the resources found in the region.
By being voice of the region I don’t mean other voices were oppressed but other voices must be subject to the majority voice which Igbo constituted the majority.
THIS WAS THEIR OFFENCE
The crime Igbo committed was being the majority voice. That was their crime. They didn’t lobby to be large in number, no. They didn’t play politics to become a large group, no. They were born so. Why should it be held against them?
When the enemies saw that the oil was mostly found outside Igbo mainland, in order to kill the voice of the oil, they began to steer other groups like mine (Ijaw) against Igbo and started convincing them that they own this oil and as such should not let Igbo be their voice but should have a voice of their own.
That brought about the call for state creation by the Rivers state groups and the southeastern groups. Seeing that the call for state creation was a divisional call, majority Igbo rejected it. This rejection angered the other ethnicities more and the enemies capitalized in it, whispering into their ears telling them “Igbo don’t want your progress, they want to rule you forever. They don’t want you to have control over your destinies, they just want to suck your oil dry”. Our people not knowing the true intent of the enemy kept on carrying the grudge.
When the enemy saw that the war was inevitable decided to create two states out of the initially Eastern region making it three states.
The purpose of the creation of these states were to weaken Biafra by creating artificial boundaries in Biafra that they can use to gain support from those who already feel oppressed by the Igbo majority.
By this strategy, Isaac Boro (Ijaw) was created by the enemies to kick Igbo out of the creeks of Rivers state (today bayelsa and Rivers states).
Isaac Boro was a foremost Ijaw activist for freedom of his people. He started by challenging the federal government in a court case that favored his region (East) but was later poisoned by the enemies to liberate Ijaw from Igbo whom they have made us to believe are after our resources and land.
Isaac Boro was unleashed by the enemies into the war against his own people (the Igbo) with the conviction that he can save his people (Ijaw) not knowing that the regional system was about to be changed into a federal structured unitary system.
He did a clean job. He chased anything that stood for Biafra from the creeks with the help of other federal troops. Being a master of the creeks he was so fearless and no one ever defeated him in the region. He wasn’t alone, other politicians like Ken Saro Wiwa, Senator Obi Wali etc also played their own part all in a bid to see their tribes have a voice for themselves.
But it didn’t get rosey for Boro as the enemies saw him as an enemy even more fierce than Ojukwu. They told themselves that if this man can kill his own people (Igbo) this much just to protect the oil which he believed was his then he will not spare us if we dare come close to it.
So he had to die (don’t forget, like Ojukwu he was about becoming a new voice for the oil) and he was betrayed and shot on the forehead by a Nigerian sniper under the command of Adekunle the red scorpion (Yoruba). The voice of the oil must remain silent.
In the year 1970, Biafra was conquered and sovereignty stolen again by the British empowered zoo called Nigeria.
Hausa Fulani (the caretakers of the zoo) continued to take turns to rule and impoverish Biafra.
At first by the help of the Yoruba foremost politician Awolowo, they declared the 20 pounds oppression and afterwards decided to divide Biafra again by declaring the abandoned property saga which they themselves did not obey but championed in the East (Ph mostly).
They continued to marginalise Biafrans. After those clear declarations, they didn’t separate Biafra in their oppression. They punish the Ijaw man no less than the Igbo man nor do they spare the Ogoni man any less than the Igbo man. When they declare jihad against Igbo, they also attack Urhobo communities.
But when it is time for us to stand up against their oppressive tendencies, they remind us of their age old propaganda whereby they conquered us that Igbo man is wicked and that he doesn’t mean well and that we should rather fight for our own instead of collective Biafra.
Finally, anyone who challenged the status quo from Biafra (south south/south East) is declared enemy of the state (rising voice of the oil) and is marked for death.
Just like they didn’t spare 5million Biafrans who were mostly Igbos, they didn’t spare Ken Saro Wiwa when he stood up against them nor did they spare Senator Obi Wali or the agitators in the Creeks today whom they tag militants. All Biafra is United in oppression but separated in agitation in order to dominate us forever.
This is the reason I can’t subscribe to a false republic of Niger Delta. Niger Delta was created by the enemies to separate us from Igbo. It is a separatist unity. A group born out of deception. It can’t stand.
I prefer a sole Ijaw country instead of artificial Niger Delta where the same way we all grouped ourselves to reject Igbo is same way others will group themselves to reject Ijaw when the real enemies from across the ocean get deep into the business of oil and decide to hit us. Of course we know.
By Tari Nemi