Something is fundamentally wrong with the mentality of a black African especially in the British enterprise called Nigeria. What has happened to our humanity that we have become so hypocritical and inhumane? What has happened to our reasoning faculty? William Blake evokes a similar opposition in “The Marriage of Heaven and Hell” when he said: “If the doors of perception were cleansed, everything would appear to man as it is infinite. For man has closed himself up, till he sees all things through narrow chinks of his cavern.” The devil has a way of talking about that which blocks one’s path in life, frustrates one’s aspirations, makes one feel stuck, hemmed in and obstructed. When seized by a demon, one feels suffocated, oppressed, and fatigued as he struggles to be free from what entraps him. These politicians have in one way or the other blocked our paths, frustrated us, suffocated us, raped us of our senses, shortened our lives and the lives of our loved ones; and I think I should not be too harsh to call this men devil.
The whole of Nigeria erupted because Senator Ike Ekweremadu was attacked with a mere egg and his shirt torn, but Nigerians fail to understand how many lives the same Ike Ekweremadu has carelessly sent to eternal rest prematurely through his actions and inactions. Social media platforms were more than ever busy because the supposed corrupt Nigerian senator was thrown an egg in Nuremberg, Germany. The same Nigerians fail to remember those that were shot live bullets on the streets of Nigeria. They blatantly failed to utter a word. Nigeria radio/television stations and newspaper houses are busy broadcasting, televising and writing respectively because Ekweremadu was assaulted in Germany but failed also to remember millions of family members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Reverend Fathers, kidnapped traditional rulers in Enugu and across and Biafraland under his nose as a serving member of the national assembly for 19 good years now. Do people suffer from dementia or is Ekweremadu more human and important than all other people?
The assault on Ekweremadu is now a taboo because it was done by IPOB but when it is done by Hausa-Fulanis or Yorubas, it becomes an acceptable culture. Have you forgotten how the same Ekweremadu colluded with the Nigerian government and the South-East governors to tag IPOB a terrorist organization after sending the Nigerian army with armored tanks, machine guns, helicopter gunships and other weapons which the country has not even used on Boko Haram or Fulani Islamic terrorists, to kill Mazi Nnamdi Kanu on September 14, 2017?
On 21st January 2015, President Jonathan was stoned in Kastina State, Muhammadu Buhari’s home State, because he failed to do what he supposed to as the then President of Nigeria. The same President Goodluck Jonathan was also stoned and some of his DSS officials were wounded same 2015 at Agwan Gaadi, Jalingo, when he went to the palace of the Chief of Jalingo to canvas for presidential votes.
Irate youths of APC in Taraba State forcefully attacked and chased governor Dairus Ishaku of Taraba State out of his country home when he accompanied Vice President Yemi Osinbajo to his political opponent, Senator Aisha Ahassan with stones and machetes. Was Senator Isah Hammah Misau not attacked in 2016 in Bauchi State for supporting the then Senate President, Senator Bukola Saraki? Was President Muhammadu Buhari not stoned in Ogun state during an election rally in 2019 for his presidential re-election? Some of these people were stoned, some people were sent to the grave by security bullets, some of them had their properties worth millions of naira destroyed but Ekweremadu was only stoned with an ordinary egg and people want heaven to fall.
It is not the corruption of the elites that bothers this piece but the inability of the masses to distinguish between parochial sentiments and their real oppressors. Everyday now reveals how average Nigerians want the country to be run. Intractably caught up in ethnic and creedal biases, Nigerians have become very defensive of people of easy virtues. With the logic of, “Is he the only person?” Yes, he is not the only person, there are many other people worse than Ekweremadu out there, but we must start from somewhere.
IPOB was even civil in dealing with Ekweremadu and that is what enlightened people like IPOB do, not coming hard on him with stones or bullets or armored tanks like its being done in Nigeria. It was just a signal of what will happen to other corrupt and imbecilic politicians out there. Today it is an egg, tomorrow it maybe stone.
Written by Obulose Chidiebere N.
Edited by Emilia Domendu
For Family Writers Press International
THERE MUST BE HEIGHTENED REPLICATION OF IKE EKWEREMADU’S GERMANY ORDEAL EVEN DOWN TO HIS CHILDREN
Nigeria doubtless, is a contraption that creates and cherishes variety of deficiencies around the citizenry in other to devalue and render them powerless and useless. When people get devalued, they become frustrated out of which reactions ensue and when they are made powerless, they become wild and ready instruments in the hands of politicians, craving for means of survival. When people are pushed to the wall, they most assuredly choose to either remain enslaved or react proportionately. It is their reactions that are easily witnessed like what is presently happening with particular reference to Ike Ekweremadu’s introductory romance with fate in Nuremberg, Germany.The South-East governors and some Hausa-Fulani bloody Igbo-named political merchants, think that they can successfully coerce Biafra, Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and the very poor masses, languishing in the dungeon of slavery and misery into suppression. They fail to come to the realisation of the fact that coercion is not and can never be a civilized/fruitful way of crises management. It seemingly suppresses crises which often than not, rear up their ugly heads in other forms giving birth to either a revolution or full blown terrorism as exemplified by Boko Haram. When consciousness evolves to a certain degree of conceptualized self-awareness, it then becomes a discovery of curious freedom in which people seize to be driven by the blind forces of biology. They get awakened in their consciences. The “madness” it must be stated here, has just begun if really it is what we are witnessing.
More of what happened to Senator Ike Ekweremadu should be replicated and even extended to their children studying overseas and other ethnic groups should follow suit. It is time for the people to take back their stolen mandate from this band of vampires called politicians. We are absolutely not going to surrender or retreat but rather, they will. IPOB is a very potent, unique, dependable enlightened and indefatigable indigenous mass movement that every sane being should fall in love with. The organization always sets the records straight no matter whose ox is gored. All those men of courage and discipline that withstood and embarrassed Ike Ekweremadu before the purview of the global community, deserve serious commendation. The revolution has just started and it cannot mutate. An elder surely deserves respect but not a useless, heartless and corrupt elder. Those class of elders who stay at home while goats deliver in tetters do not deserve an iota of respect and honor. Previously, it was Rochas Okorocha but today, it is Senator Ike Ekweremadu. Soon, another person in the pack will take his/her own turn of the treatment.
What is most worrisome in all these political imbecilic displays of the so-called Igbo leaders border on how someone who is surrendered by a cacophony of complaints of improper representation would be complaining when politicians are called upon to render accounts of their stewardship. And until people begin to hold these Fulani slaves accountable, they will always take the people for a ride. In the entirety of the continent of black Africa, nothing is working just because those that occupy positions of leadership in whatever grade, have not been held accountable.
Nigerian political class send their children abroad to developed countries for their academic pursuits but here in Nigeria, the same politicians get neck deep into embezzling monies allocated for the education industry. They pocket the funds, remitting them to foreign bank accounts. Then those in Nigeria are slaves that do not deserve quality education in the best of universities. It may interest you to note that the best government owned university in the country is the worst of standards in the Western world. Lecturers are not paid and industrial actions are the order of the day. There exists arrays of dilapidated classroom and office buildings in virtually every State in Nigeria, with even federal universities being the worst affected.
These politicians need be compelled to bring their children back from whichever countries they. None of their family members live in this evil enclave to school or be treated in the hospitals. If it is an error, it has to be corrected now. All the politicians and their families should come back to Nigeria and get the full dose of all that they are subjecting other people to. A course that is supposed to take only four years, takes six years due to corruption and spate of industrial action. The overseas they flock to, are developed by human beings just like them. Mary Wilson once said: “what makes us inhumane is the inability to reason”. If these politicians really reason, they will know that those places they take solace overseas were not built by God but by mere mortals like them.
In the midst of the psychosis, crumble, decadence and cacophony of ravaging shitholic antecedents Nigerians can yet lay hold on historic redemption, restoration and fulfillment if only the youths will rise up and stop playing the ostrich while these dishonorable men randomly gamble with their destinies. Let all the various ethnic nationalities part ways. This illegal marriage must be nullified. Enough is enough!
Written by Obulose Chidiebere
Edited by Peter Oshagwu
For Family Writers Press International
BIAFRA: MONTHLY GENERAL MEETING OF IPOB OBIO/AKPOR AREA 2, IGWEOCHA PROVINCE
The Area 2 family of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), in Obio/Akpor local government area, Igweocha Province of Biafraland, held it’s monthly general meeting on Sunday 18th August 2019. The meeting recorded large turn out of accredited members which included zonal coordinators and their deputies, unit coordinators and their deputies, treasurers and media personnel.It was kick-started at 4:45pm with a session of prayers said in diverse Biafran indigenous languages. Exhortation was given by Mazi Wisdom Asuquo, enjoining members to sincerely seek the only true God that created the heavens and the earth.
The Obio/Akpor Area 2 coordinator, Mazi Wisdom Elochukwu Okafor heartily welcomed all the participants and appreciated God for protection and safety as well as for the grace for the attendance of the day’s meeting. The Area 2 Elders Forum Chairman, elder Njoku Ikechukwu Chukwunonyerem, prayed over the kola nuts as presented.
Mazi Wisdom Elochukwu Okafor recalling the seeming ugly trend propping up in some quarters within his jurisdiction, seriously frowned against disrespect to zonal coordinators by other principal officers and members. He as a matter of utmost priority, sternly warned that at no time should he get further unholy information regarding such, reiterating the need for all IPOB family members to imbibe the principle of discipline, loyalty and obedience to their zonal coordinators who remain the chief principal officers in their respective zones. He equally stated that such privileges should not as well be abused by the zonal coordinators, as acts of dictatorship by any them will never ever be condoned. He harped on the need for the zonal coordinators to imbibe the outstanding leadership qualities of the IPOB leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu in all their dealings with the brethren. All relevant innovative strategies already outlined, aimed at enhancing IPOB objectives in the Biafra restoration project must be followed, he further maintained. Mazi Wisdom Okafor warned that on no account should monthly dues remittance be delayed. Henceforth, financial secretaries must ensure prompt payment of dues to the appropriate quarter a day after monthly meetings. He stated that appropriate disciplinary measures will be taken against offenders. Logistic costs aimed at facilitating their movements in this respect must be the burden of the zones.
Prince Chisom C. Iheukwumere, the Area 2 Media Head, gave a brief rundown of trending information to the house, with particular reference to Senator Ike Ekweremadu’s encounter with the family members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) in Nuremberg, Germany. Other issues associated with the department were also highlighted. He encouraged all to tune in to the live broadcast of Radio Biafra London wherein Mazi Nnamdi Kanu was billed to speak to the world same day at 7:00pm Biafra time. All the zones and units coordinators were advised to encourage their interested members to enlist into the media team. The need for all to explore available social media platforms created by the department to easily access developments, was also re-emphasized.
Mrs. Sandra Ngozi George, representing the IPOB Women Wing, graciously thanked the leadership for the encouraging support so far received. She equally used the opportunity to plead that all married male members whose wives are not yet part of the struggle should help in encouraging them to get enlisted.
Elder Oghenekaro Edemejaro, the Area 2 Welfare Coordinator gave a brief on developments in the department. He enjoined all the zones and units to encourage their members to sacrificially give for the welfare of IPOB family members that are presently being incarcerated in various detention facilities across the State.
Bishop Prince Joshua Joseph, an outstanding Minister of God who showed up in the meeting, was heartily welcomed and appreciated for his invaluable sacrifices in the struggle. He was automatically appointed by Mazi Wisdom Elochukwu Okafor, as the Head of Ministers Forum in Area 2.
The Elders Forum Chairman, elder Njoku Chukwunonyerem enjoined all to always accord the elders in their various IPOB family meetings their due respect and channel acts of unwholesome behavior of any to the appropriate quarter. Collaborating his position was the Area coordinator who also maintained that the elders must as a matter of discipline and reciprocity, remain submissive to the leadership of their zonal coordinators who are the chief principal officers in their respective jurisdictions.
The meeting adjourned at 7:02pm with closing prayers said by Mazi Wisdom Elochukwu Okafor.
Reporting for Family Writers Press International
IKE EKWEREMADU: HIS PERSONALITY AND THE SYMBOLISM OF YAM
Briefly put, Senator Ike Ekweremadu can be said to be one of the political leaders presumably chosen by his constituency or senatorial zone to represent their interests in the Nigerian upper legislative chamber called the Senate. He, out of the very corrupt indices of the Nigerian government, has abysmally disappointed the expectations of his people, shamelessly taking sides with the enemies to suppress and kill the very people on whose purported resaons he is sojourning in Abuja.YAM on the other hand, is one of the greatest staple foods that is cultivated and even adoured across Biafraland especially within the Igbo speaking area. It is a generational inheritance from ancestry. It is a seed that endures seasonally if well preserved. And because of the surviving nature of this tuber seed, the Igbo nation uses it as one of the very symbolic items in great festivities like traditional weddings, visits to new born babies by both paternal and maternal in-laws as occasion demands, symbolizing wishes for longetivity of life.
|Senator Ike Ekweremadu|
The new yam festivals are occasions marked annually with funfair at the beginning of harvesting seasons across Igboland. This occasion as traditionally demanded, opens the door for indigenous, bona-fide sons and daughters to converge and give thanks to God Almighty for His favors, protections and bountiful harvests of farm produce. During this occasion, lavish thanksgivings to God are made and issues bordering on communities are deliberated on, while also proffering/initiating developmental ideas. Realistically, it affords opportunities to distant relatives to meet once again after a long while. The new yam festival affords the people, moments of reliving the customs of the land through tourism attractions and socialization.
NEW YAM CELEBRATIONS IN FOREIGN LANDS
Occasioned by wider spread of Igbos across the globe, the cultural event has also been carried overboard, making the revered cultural festival to be celebrated at home by those sojourning overseas somewhat alien. They no longer have the interest of coming back home or even thinking about their people. It is against the culture of Ndigbo for this festival to be celebrated outside their homeland. It is an anathema to even consider celebrating this annual event in the land of those who through their covert or overt involvements, participated in the gruesome massacre of innocent Biafrans. Over the years, the spate of injustice meted on the Igbos remains unimaginably painful and incurable. The hearts are yet bleeding with that heinous criminality against the people. Unfortunately however, the political representatives via their mad cravings for selfishness, have consistently being applying salt to the incurable wounds of this genocide through sabotage and wilful negligence to their avowed responsibilities. Criminally abandoning their people to die in penury, Fulani terrorism trade and other relative acts of violence while traveling abroad on demented celebration spree, culturally meant to be conducted at home.
POLITICISATION OF THE NEW YAM FESTIVAL
It is really a pity to say that a well respected culture like New Yam Festival, has been turned into a feast of the rich, corrupt and uncultured individuals. It has become a culture that encourages and teaches servitude and suffering before pleasures against a culture that teaches the importance of laboring during the planting season and bountifully reaping during the harvesting season but all that proudly bequeathed to us and cherished, have automatically lost their value and glory due to the moronic/corrupt antecedents of these Igbo politicians of shame. During the planting season, they care-less and exhibit no concern to that which troubles the peasant farmers even when there is nothing or little stocks of seed for planting. They totally abandoned the agricultural project because they hope to feed on the farm produce elsewhere at the expense of the people they shamelessly claim to represent.
The rampaging Fulani killer herdsmen (terrorist cattle herders) all over Igboland, resulted from the despicable negligence of these so-called political leaders and elites, claiming representation of the people at various government cadres. The farmers cannot access their farms anymore for fear of being killed or raped by the Fulani Islamic terrorists. There is no longer yam crops to harvest in the land. The politicians now gallivant globally especially within Europe, to celebrate the new yam festival. If this maladious antecedents are therefore allowed to continue unchecked, what then will be the fate of the revered culture of the Igboman and the poor masses who cannot afford to travel to the Western world in search of yam? The people who have unfortunately, been pushed to the wall, have to start off with a very definitive/commendable action through it’s species that are domiciled in Germany.
The politicians henceforth, should realize that their games are up and that the wounded, the impoverished, the victimized and the humiliated have arisen in desperation, in search of permanent healing and rest. It is for your own interest as an Igbo politician to stay back and fix the problems you helped to create. All must partake in our rich culture as the opportunity beckons and enjoy the peace of the land only when the right things are done. You cannot be in a strange land and be singing the song of redemption. God forbids!
Written by Paul Emerenini
Edited by Peter Oshagwu
For Family Writers Press International
Biafra: Nuremberg Scenario, a Litmus Test for what is to Come
August 22, 2019
By Princewill Akubumma | Biafra Writers
The 21st-century democracy in every part of the world gives the masses the authority to hold their corrupt leaders accountable. The Nuremberg incident involving the former Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, is a litmus test of what awaits corrupt politicians in that unfortunate British establishment called Nigeria.
The political divides – APC and PDP – have been in serious loggerhead, but sensing the looming karma as heralded by the Ekweremadu encounter, they are suddenly unified … unified in a frantic effort to quench the fire of revolution. Rather than improve the lives of the people they are leading, our politicians devise a means of looting our common wealth while intimidating anyone that dare challenge them.
The singular fact that they are now coming together to form a synergy, putting party differences aside in order to defend selves, should open the eyes of the oppressed masses to see the need to synergize with IPOB who have taken the bold step and form a common front. Every civilized and developed country in the world once had revolution.
In the USA, the likes of George Washington, George Bush, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and countless others were once heavily barricaded by angry mobs that pelted them with eggs and dirt to register their displeasure. In Britain, Tony Blair – former British Prime minister – was once pelted with eggs and shoved around by angry masses.
We have as well seen in the social media, viral video footage of angry Ukrainians beating and shoving their corrupt politicians, forcing them into the street waste bins as a result of their inefficacy in representation. Heavens didn’t fall upon those angry masses, for they have it as a fundamental right to protest against corrupt leaders in any democratic dispensation. Yet, in the Nigerian setting, politicians wouldn’t have the masses even air a dissenting view. Speak against the government and you are a dead man.
Recall, however, that in 2013 Sahara Reporters circulated video footage of Rotimi Chibuike Amechi – then still the governor of Rivers state – addressing an audience on the docility and cowardice behavior of Nigerian youths towards corrupt politicians. Amechi told the listeners that Nigerian politicians have been taking them for a ride and charged them to be more confrontational against irresponsible leaders.
The Igbo youths in Germany seem to be taking Amechi’s advice. The day of rage has come. The oppressed people are taking their destiny into their hand. No hiding place for the corrupt politicians.
Publisher: Charles Opanwa
Wake up Biafrans, You are Being Killed off
August 22, 2019
By Chuks Ken Agboeze | For Biafra Writers
Every day we move around, we travel from here to there, frightened. We are frightened because we may be the next target, the next victim of the marauding Fulani herdsmen.
First, you hear about all these and you feel nonchalant, unperturbed. You even go ahead to term it “noise, false alarm or unnecessary panic. To you it’s all a lie; we are just painting a bad image of the country. You feel that because of our quest for Biafra we now raise false alarm.
Maybe because none of your close relatives or friends is yet affected you dismiss our outcry. You even stoop so low to think it’s politically motivated. Well, as the Igbo would say, e buru ozu nwa onye ozo n’ isi o dika o bu ukwu-nku (when the corpse of another man’s child is being carried, it looks like firewood).
We are living in the den with hungry lions no doubt. Nevertheless, the biblical Daniel survived the lions, but those who plotted against him didn’t. Yes, I may be living in fear; yes, I may be so conscious of not seeing the next day; yes, I may always be on the road which is now a deathtrap; but God willing, I won’t be consumed by the lions.
Our people are being killed almost on daily basis. If I were you, brother, I will take a pause to ask myself “who’s next?” You might just be visiting village to leave the next day only to meet your end. Untimely and brutal end. And RIP would be said and written of you as you have passively written of others. Your likes would then argue as you have done in your time that the death report, (now your death report) is false alarm and unnecessary panic. Then you will realize, but rather too late, that all we said is true, and you would wish (in vain) that you had acted differently. You should have at least listened to the voice of caution. Neither you nor I deserve to go this way, brother. We do not deserve to die horribly and untimely.
The Islamic Caliphate agenda is to depopulate Biafra and enslave the remnants. Don’t you still get it, brother? Can’t you read the handwriting on the wall? Everything this current Fulani government does points to that fact. Think of RUGA, think of Fulani Vigilante, think of the shutting down of Enugwu airport, think of the various policies of this Jubril-Buhari led government.
Lastly, even if you don’t like that name Biafra, for the sake of your life and that of your children or relatives, wake up to the realities on ground. You are hated in Nigeria. You are the quarry. You are not a Nigerian come to that. No one is. Wake up, Biafrans.
The Whirlwind of Revolution Blows Down Senator Ike Ekweremadu
By Eluwa Chidiebere Chinazu | Biafra Writers
August 21, 2019The cloud of absolute and nonnegotiable revolution is gathering. Although it is hard for Nigerian political players to accept, it is becoming clearer that this revolution is heading into a more radical phase. Its weight has been demonstrated in Germany with Sen. Ike Ekweremadu’s scenario. The senator never imagined how aggrieved the youths were until his cloth was torn. If the politicians have working brain therefore, the Ekweremadu incident is a message to them all. Nothing can triumph over the collective will of the people.
The Ekweremadu incident brings to mind a similar occurrence in France centuries ago. On August 10, 1792, a crowd of about 20,000 people attacked the Tuileries Palace. The King and Queen escaped but later were put on house arrest. Over the next month, hundreds of suspected royalists were executed in what became known as the “September Massacre” in history.
As that revolution changed the once corrupt France to a better one and brewed revolution around Europe, so also is history moving towards that direction in Africa. It will be foolhardy for anybody to underrate the power the collective will of the people carries.
Politicians in Nigeria should remember that the rain does not recognize anyone as a friend; it drenches all equally. I advise therefore that from now on they should take the cry of the masses serious. What happened in Germany should serve as an eye-opener to all.
Lastly, the politicians from the Eastern Region of Nigeria should understand that there is time for everything on earth. What I saw in the eyes of the people is not what words can explain. A tree that refuses to dance is made to do so by the wind, but the wind does not break a tree that bends. Time to support your people because that is the only escape route left.
The Biafra Times
Edited by Nelson Ofokar Yagazie
Publisher: Chijindu Benjamin Ukah
Contact us: [email protected]org
Mazi Nnamdi Kanu And IPOB Should Not Be Crucified But Praised
■ Twitter: @Umuchiukwu_writ
■ 20, August , 2019
|Mazi Nnamdi Kanu|
Biafra is our destination.
For Umuchiukwu Writers.
BIAFRA ABAKALIKI: MORE IPOB FAMILIES ESTABLISHED IN EBONYI DESPITE UMAHI’S THREATS
18th August 2019 the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) led by Mazi
Nnamdi Kanu, established Isu Achara family unit under Isu zone in
Onicha LGA Ebonyi south senatorial district Abakaliki Province.
unit is located few kilometres to Engr. David Umahi’s hometown in Uburu.
correspondent Udoudo Etim who filed in the report says that many from
the community came out to identify with IPOB family. They equally pledged
allegiance to Mazi Nnamdi Kanu and IPOB in the struggle to restore Biafra.
Indigenous People Of Biafra in Ebonyi state has vowed never to relent despite
the threats by the state governor Chief Engr David Nwaeze Umahi to shut down
the activities of IPOB in Ebonyi state.
that since July 29th, 2019 after IPOB had a successful protest in the state
against the Nigeria Federal government proposed nationwide RUGA settlement for
Fulani herdsmen, the state governor and his colleagues has become restless and
has since being doing all they could to restrict IPOB from her activities in
Ebonyi and elsewhere in Biafra land.
Friday Igiri & Udoudo Etim
For: Ebonyi State Media
RESTRUCTURING IS NOT THE SOLUTION
In the new Nigeria E-Passport, there are pictures of cattle and Fulani herdsmen on it. Also on the Nigerian Army Logo, there is Arabic inscription on it. Hausa/Fulani have a specific way of achieving their Islamization agenda. They never get tired of trying or being in a hurry to get what they want, but they must get it either through intimidation or terror. If restructuring fails, they will still come up with another agenda because they can never stop trying.
The Animalistic Instincts of Nnia Nwodo
Following the encounter with aggrieved Igbo youths in Nuremberg, Germany, in which the erstwhile deputy president of the Senate, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, was chased out of the Iri Ji festival, the president of the proscribed Igbo socio-cultural group, Ohaneze Ndigbo, Chief John Nnia Nwodo, has called on German police to arrest the protesting Igbo youths. Mistaking Europe for uncivilized Nigeria, the self-serving president of Ohaneze urged German police to deal with the Igbo youths for registering dissatisfaction with the current crop of Igbo politicians.
Nnia Nwodo who was only months ago described as an idiot by the governor of Anambara state, Willie Obiano, was full of hate as he poured venom on the protesting youths. In a statement issued in Enugwu hours after the incident, Nwodo said, “The assault on Ekweremadu by Igbos in Germany, described as IPOB, is disappointing, grotesque and dangerous for Igbo solidarity. This violent, rude, impertinent, divisive and discourteous style of IPOB or IPOB instigated miscreants is damaging to our cause. It strengthens the case of those who describe them as terrorists and weaken our case against the infringement of our fundamental human rights.” In his view, staging a demonstration qualifies one as a terrorist. Pathetic.
It’s quite lugubrious that whilst Nnia Nwodo sees a simple protest aimed at awakening Igbo politicians up to their responsibilities as “grotesque, rude, impertinent, divisive and dangerous for Igbo solidarity,” he doesn’t see the conspiratorial silence of the politicians over the constant killing, raping and abducting of our people by the marauding Fulani herdsmen in the same light, neither has he seen the danger in the allocation of our lands to Fulani for RUGA Settlements as Southeast governors are covertly doing now.
Furthering his risible statement, the Nsukka born saboteur who in Lagos publically pledged to sabotage Biafra struggle said, “Ekweremadu negotiated the sureties and securities for Nnamdi Kanu’s release on bail. He does not deserve this picketing and disgrace. A disgrace to him is a disgrace to Igbo race.” Funny how a protest against the docility of a political office holder turns a disgrace to the Igbo race but the invasion of the royal palace of an Igbo traditional ruler, Eze Israel Okwu Kanu, is not a disgrace to the Igbo. The thinking of the so-called Igbo elite.
The power-drunk Nwodo concluded his pathetic speech with the appeal on German authorities to arrest and prosecute those that protested against one of the chief architects of Python Dance, Senator Ike Ekweremadu. Nwodo said, “Whilst I condemn the attack on our revered son and leader, I call on the law enforcement agencies in Germany to bring to book the perpetrators of this despicable act. It is un-Igbo. It is disgraceful.”
Nnia Nwodo wants unarmed civilians arrested simply because they protested against a corrupt and underperforming senator. Yet in USA protesters blocked President Donald Trump’s way, stoning him with can water and other items. American police neither arrested nor prosecuted anybody. In Germany where the Ekweremadu incident took place and other parts of the Western world, the masses protest against their leaders, and nobody gets arrested or prosecuted. That’s because they (the Western world) are civilized. In Nigeria, the army and police shoot unarmed protesters. The comparative difference shows one thing: Nigeria is uncivilized, undemocratic, animalistic and savage. Reason Nigeria is called Zoo – an animal kingdom where even the so-called educated class is beasty in their dealings.
Nnia Nwodo’s call on German police to arrest and prosecute people for demonstrating indignation against corrupt and ineffective political office holders betrays his animalistic nature. He clearly mistook Germany for the Zoo called Nigeria.
Chibuike John Nebeokike
For: Radio Biafra Media
Top 7 Igbo Politicians on IPOB Blacklist and Why
SETTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT ON THE ACTIVE ROLE IKE EKWEREMADU, NNIA NWODO, DAVE UMAHI, OKEZIE IKPEAZU, ROCHAS OKOROCHA, WILLIE OBIANO & IFEANYI UGWUANYI PLAYED IN THE PLOT TO ASSASSINATE ME & KILL OUR DREAM OF FREEDOM THROUGH THEIR OPERATION PYTHON DANCE [Part 1]
These men mentioned above instigated, financed and defended a full-scale bloody military invasion of Biafraland they tagged Operation Python Dance that led to the torture and untimely death of over 600 Biafrans, 28 of which fell in my compound.
These men sanctioned the desecration of the home of an Igbo tradition ruler by Fulani soldiers and did not care if my father HRM Eze Israel Okwu Kanu and my mother, who were home with me during the unprovoked invasion, is killed or not. All these desperate Igbo politicians ever wanted was my death, the death of IPOB, the death of our dream of freedom for all.
In view of the Nuremberg encounter, it has become necessary for us to refresh our memories lest it succumbs to confusion and deliberate misinformation because most people, unlike we IPOB, are in the habit of excusing intolerable evil and wickedness but we not. Every perpetrator of evil, every purveyor of iniquity, every merchant of misery and every defender of injustice must and will be held to account. We will relent until justice is served.
Full Resolution of South-East Governors On IPOB and Operation Python Dance
The Chairman of the South-East Governors Forum and Governor of Ebonyi State, Dave Umahi, read the resolution with Enugu Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi to his left and Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra State to his right.
The South-East Governors Forum held a meeting at Government House in Enugu over the increased tension in the region after what they mischievously termed Sunday’s clash between soldiers and members of the Indigenous People of Biafra.
At the end of the meeting, which was also attended by Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu and President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo John Nwodo, they arrived at 11 resolutions which include a ban on IPOB activities and an appeal to President Muhammadu Buhari to withdraw soldiers from the region.
Below is the statement read by the Chairman of the South-East Governors Forum and Governor of Ebonyi State Dave Umahi at the end of that meeting:
In view of the prevailing situation in the South East and its attendant consequences, the South-East governors hereby resolve as follows:
- All activities of IPOB are hereby proscribed. IPOB and all other aggrieved groups are to articulate their position on all national issues and submit to the committee of Governors of South East, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, and National Assembly members from South-East zone through the Chairman of South-East Governors Forum.
All governors of South East are expected to ensure compliance in their respective states.
The South-East Governors Forum, Ohanaeze Ndigbo and National Assembly Members do hereby reinforce their commitment to one united and indivisible Nigeria.
We also reinforce our desire for the restructuring of Nigeria where all national issues will be discussed and amicably settled to achieve justice and fairness to every Nigerian.
We reiterate our earlier position that the November 18, 2017, Gubernatorial election in Anambra State must hold.
Accordingly, we appeal to our President and Commander-In-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, His Excellency President Muhammadu Buhari GCFR to, please, withdraw the military in the South-East Zone while the police perform their traditional role of maintaining law and order within this period.
South-East governors have taken concrete steps to protect the lives and properties of non-indigenes in the South East and, of course, including the lives and properties of indigenes in the South-East as well.
We are in touch with the Northern Governors Forum and they have assured us of the safety of all our people living in the North and we have also planned for exchange of visits between the governors. This is to reinforce the confidence of Nigerians in this regard.
In keeping with our earlier position, we wish to assure Nigerians that full investigation is ongoing and all allegations of killings, maiming and other unlawful conduct in the South-East Zone within this period. The governors and the security agencies are in agreement that appropriate action will be taken against anyone culpable.
We advise all residents of the South East to go about their normal businesses as the government of each state is committed to protecting everybody.
Finally, we advise our people in the South East to, please, be law-abiding.
[End of statement]
I have added the video of the unprovoked military assault on my compound by the cowardly Nigerian Army whose sole purpose was to kill me -an unarmed man, my parents and those around me despite the fact we are a peaceful movement. Those with a conscience can now understand the root cause of our anger and why we won’t stop until they all pay dearly for their sins.
COMRADE EMMA POWERFUL MEDIA AND PUBLICITY SECRETARY ON BEHALF OF MAZI NNAMDI KANU IPOB LEADER.
Chibuike John Nebeokike
For: Radio Biafra Media
South East Governors Write Buhari Over Airport, Herdsmen
■ Twitter: @Umuchiukwu_writ
■ 20, August , 2019
Governors in Nigeria’s south east have written to President Muhammadu Buhari urging him to delay the closure of the Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu, and act against insecurity in the region.
The South East Governors Forum also asked the president to approve its earlier decision banning herders who have no cattle, as well as the movement of cattle by foot in the region.
Coming three days after a senior politician from the region, Ike Ekweremadu, was attacked in Germany, the governors said they were making the letter public to assuage public allegations that they were not doing enough to check growing insecurity in the region.
“We plead with Mr. President that we publish this letter to assuage our people’s feelings who erroneously think that no efforts are being made by the leaders of the South East to tackle insecurity and economic challenges facing the zone and to let them know that her leaders before now have been working very hard without making noise as issues of security must not be discussed in the public,” the letter signed by signed by the chairman of the forum and governor of Ebonyi State, David Umahi, said.
Mr Ekweremadu, senator and former Senate deputy president, was mobbed and manhandled on Saturday by members of IPOB, a secessionist group in the region, who accused him of not rising in defence of South East people against insecurity.
The letter to President Buhari said the postponement of the closure of the Enugu airport will allow adequate arrangements to be made for travellers.
The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, had on Saturday announced that it will close the airport’s runway for major repairs.
But the governors said the closure was prompt and will not give them any time to make security arrangement for the convenience of the people, and visitors to the region who would be travelling long distances to alternative airports where flights would be diverted to.
The governors called on the president to direct aviation authorities to provide immediate palliatives in form of transportation with armed escorts and helicopter services to prospective passengers from alternative airports that connect the zone.
The governors said the federal Ministry of Works in collaboration with the South East Governors’ Forum should carry out repairs on major roads leading to the alternative airports as well as clear all the bushes along the routes for better view of road users.
They asked that 24-hour joint security patrol be provided for the safety of the people and visitors to the South East who will be using the roads day and night through the alternative airports.
“Your Excellency, in our letters to the respective ministries, we observed that the notification of the closure was prompt giving us no time to make adequate arrangement for the security and convenience of our people and visitors to the South East who will be travelling long instances to alternative airports where flights will be diverted to,” the letter said.
This governors also asked the president to approve their earlier resolution banning herdsmen without cattle and movement of cattle by foot in the zone.
This, they said, is to eliminate increasing cases of killing, maiming, raping of women, kidnapping of the people and destruction of farmlands mostly carried out by “foreign herdsmen” with the backing of some compromised local herders.
“That Mr. President do approve the earlier resolution of the South East Governors banning herdsmen without cattle and movement of cattle by foot in the zone to eliminate increasing cases of killing, maiming, raping of our women, kidnapping of our people and destruction of our farmlands mostly carried out by foreign herdsmen and in most cases with the backing of some compromised local herders.
Published By Nwaiwu Chiukwuebuka
For Umuchiukwu Writers.
Biafra: The Foolishness Of The Nigeria Priests
■ Twitter: @Umuchiukwu_writ
■ 20, August , 2019
Published By Nwaiwu Chiukwuebuka
For Umuchiukwu Writers.
Biafra: Is Enugu State In The Hand Of God Or Fulani Herdsmen Militia?
■ Twitter: @Umuchiukwu_writ
■ 20, August , 2019
Enugu State is in the hand of God slogan by one Efulefu in the person of governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, is a slogan brought by his administration to impoverish the people of Enugu State, it’s high time every right-thinking man should ask his or herself this question if Enugu state is in the hand of God?
because the last time I checked it seems the state is now in the hands of Fulani herdsmen militia.
Our imcompaibity to rise and challenge the murderous and imbecilic governor against the injustice melted on our people is the reason why Fulani herdsmen militia will continue to slaughter and pillage our lands,if truly Enugu State is in the hand of God why then must he allow an infidels to murder his own servant Rev Fr Paul Offu?
Ndi-Enugu must stop being too gullible and foolish with Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi led administration slogan which says “Enugu State is in the hand of God” because facts and figures have proven to all our sandry that Enugu state is currently under the occupation of Fulani herdsmen militia super-headed by Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi.
Published By Nwaiwu Chiukwuebuka
For Umuchiukwu Writers.
Biafra: Eldership And Leadership In Igbo Land
In Igbo Land
■ Twitter: @Umuchiukwu_writ
■ 22, August , 2019
|School children in Biafraland|
Published By Nwaiwu Chiukwuebuka
For Umuchiukwu Writers.
Polish Women Protest Proposed Abortion Ban (Again)
WARSAW — To Magda, giving birth would have meant inflicting a slow death. Her unborn child had a rare genetic syndrome that causes severe, fatal birth defects.
“I would feed it, hug it, love it, get attached to it, and then, when it would be 3 or 4 months old, it would suffocate while in my arms,” she recalled, explaining her decision a decade ago to have an abortion. “It would scar me for life. I don’t know if I would be capable of giving birth to another child and not look at it as if it were the one that had died in my arms.”
She asked that her surname not be used, fearing that the agonizing decision she made could be used to shame her. But even in Poland, an overwhelmingly Roman Catholic country with some of the strictest anti-abortion laws in Europe and a government seeking to curb reproductive rights, it is a decision she could still make legally — at least for now.
Lawmakers from the governing Law and Justice party, who have previously tried to ban all abortions, are making a renewed push to outlaw them, even when the fetus is sure to die in infancy.
The government dropped the earlier bill after it set off nationwide protests in 2016. Lawmakers revised the legislation to make it less harsh, including dropping criminal penalties for women who have abortions, and the new version has once again stirred women in Poland to take to the streets.
Under a pale gray sky outside the Parliament building on Friday, thousands of women raised red placards shaped like hands that read “STOP.” They demanded that the government stop pressing for new abortion laws and charged that the country’s leaders were treating women as if their views had no value.
Agata Lewandowska came by bus from Poznan and said she had made the trip with her twin 27-year-old daughters in mind. “I am terrified about what is happening in this country,” she said. “And I am just so frustrated.”
Carrying a flag with a silhouette of a woman with a lightening bolt, the symbol of the rally, and wearing a sticker of a pregnant woman in the place of Jesus on the cross, she joined thousands of others as they marched from Parliament to the headquarters of the governing party.
Along the way, they chanted, “Your rule will end, but your shame will last.” Many women, and the men that joined them, wore stickers with a woman, fist clenched, declaring, “We have had enough.”
Some 200 nongovernmental organizations joined in writing a public appeal to Polish lawmakers, saying the bill would “place women’s health and lives at risk and violate Poland’s international human rights obligations.” The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights has also condemned the proposed law.
The previous effort to ban abortion was thwarted when Polish women mobilized on a scale unseen in the country’s history — more than 150,000 rallied in roughly 140 cities, towns and villages in October 2016. Their fight helped start a general strike by women in dozens of countries around the world, coinciding with International Women’s Day on March 8, 2017, and known in the United States as “A Day Without a Woman.”
The earlier Polish bill would have prohibited all abortions, and threatened legal action against women who went outside the country to terminate pregnancies and against doctors who helped them. The law would also have limited access to prenatal care and contraception, in a country where birth control is increasingly difficult for women to obtain.
Two days after the 2016 rallies, the bill was pulled.
Poland’s increasingly autocratic government has alienated its international allies by curbing the independence of the courts and restricting speech about the Holocaust. But even a governing party that was willing to defy critics abroad backed off at the sight of so many empowered women on the streets at home, said Krystyna Kacpura, the executive director of the Federation for Women and Family Planning.
Since then, anti-abortion campaigners have been working “step by step” to curtail women’s reproductive rights, she said.
Their latest effort is a bill that supporters say is only about protecting unborn babies with disabilities.
Jaroslaw Kaczynski, the Law and Justice leader, has argued that it does not matter if a baby’s life is short, saying in 2016 that it was his goal to “strive to make cases of even very difficult pregnancies, when the child is doomed to die because it is severely deformed, finish with birth, so that the child can be baptized, buried, given a name.”
Jacek Januszewski, a member of Life and Family Foundation, an organization dedicated to ending abortion, said, “People who are healthy enjoy a full set of human rights from the moment they are conceived, whereas the disabled are discriminated against at this prenatal stage.”
Mr. Januszewski, whose group drafted the proposed legislation, said that of 1,100 abortions performed in Poland in 2016, 1,042 were related to the health of the fetus.
“It’s 95 percent of all abortions, and that’s what we want to ban,” he said. “Almost 40 percent are the abortions of children suffering from Down syndrome. This illness is a genetic condition, but many of the people with it enjoy a normal life and are aware of this discrimination. We regularly receive thank-you cards from many of them.”
The politics of abortion are almost always divisive, and in Poland, the issue is further complicated by history.
Abortion was legalized in 1956 under Communist rule, and for years, Poland had one of the most liberal abortion laws in Europe. The procedure became so common that it is estimated that at least one in four Polish women have had an abortion.
The church played a key role in the fight against Communism, and the collapse of the Soviet bloc led to an embrace of Catholic identity that had been suppressed. With the church pushing hard for a total ban, lawmakers made abortion illegal in 1993, with exceptions for serious threats to the health of the mother or the fetus, and for pregnancy resulting from rape or incest.
For years, the laws were not widely enforced, but they did create a two-tier system, allowing women with money to go to private doctors to get abortions while forcing poorer women to seek out less reliable options.
No major party in Poland supports liberalizing abortion laws, but the election of Law and Justice in 2015 brought a push to enforce existing laws and further limit women’s reproductive choices.
The “morning after” pill had been sold over the counter, but a senior official from the governing party called it “a death pill,” and the government made it available only by prescription.
Under a legal “conscience clause,” Polish doctors can refuse to prescribe birth control, and pharmacists often refuse to dispense it, making it hard — sometimes impossible — to obtain prescription contraceptives.
Meanwhile, a Health Ministry ad has been encouraging Poles to “breed like rabbits.”
“If you want to become a parent one day, look at the rabbits,” encourages the narrator, himself a bunny. “I know what I’m talking about, my father had 63 of us!”
Such efforts, however, have only emboldened some women to protest. On Thursday, a front-page headline of the leading Polish daily, Gazeta Wyborcza, blared: “Enough is enough! We are taking to the streets.”
“I feel like I have been protesting since I was born,” said Matylda Szempruch, a 22-year-old philosophy major at Warsaw University.
On an array of issues, the governing party has been able to wear down public resistance — it introduces a divisive bill, weathers protests, retreats temporarily, proposes a new bill, and ultimately enacts a version of the law it wanted, with less outcry.
Mr. Januszewski, the anti-abortion activist, noted that two years ago there were thousands of people but that the number had decreased to hundreds.
But on Friday, thousands of Poles made their voice heard. Magda Kazmierczak, 34, said that one protest might not be enough to stop the government, but that she and others would not give up.
Speaking of her 2-year-old daughter, she said, “I don’t want her to grow up in a country that will stifle her independence and deprive her of her fundamental rights.”
Justyna Wydrzynska, an activist with the Polish nonprofit organization Kobiety w Sieci (Women on Web), offers help to women seeking information on sex, contraception and abortion, but says she fears that the new law would make much of her work illegal.
“I would probably have to leave the country as we could be prosecuted for our activities,” she said. “Or maybe I would stay and let them put me in prison. Maybe the world would pay more attention then.”
‘We’ve Had Enough,’ Says Peru’s New President
LIMA, Peru — Martín Vizcarra, who had been Peru’s first vice president and ambassador to Canada, was sworn in as the nation’s president on Friday afternoon, after Congress accepted the resignation of his predecessor, Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, who was brought down by scandals involving graft, vote-buying and a looming impeachment.
In his inaugural speech, Mr. Vizcarra said this was “a difficult moment” for the country.
“The time has come to say we’ve had enough,” Mr. Vizcarra said. “Any type of irregularity must be punished accordingly and justice must act with independence, responsibility and speed. But at the same time, what has happened must mark the end point of a policy of hatred and confrontation.”
Earlier Friday, 105 of 130 lawmakers voted to accept the letter of resignation that Mr. Kuczynski offered on Wednesday, in which he admitted no wrongdoing and accused lawmakers of obstructing his administration.
Legislators also passed a resolution, in which they said they “deplore and reject” the language that Mr. Kuczynski used to resign and held that “the current political crisis is the result of acts that the president himself has committed.”
Mr. Kuczynski’s resignation came a day before an impeachment hearing scheduled by Congress on the charge of “permanent moral incapacity.”
Mr. Vizcarra is an engineer and a former governor of the Moquegua region in southern Peru, and he was once part of Mr. Kuczynski’s cabinet, until Congress threatened to dismiss him and he resigned instead. He accepted a post as ambassador to Canada last September, saying his role as first vice president was “more about protocol than about executive action.” He arrived in Lima, the capital, shortly after midnight on Friday to assume the presidency, one day after turning 55.
He told reporters waiting at the airport that they should have “faith and optimism” and that “Peru always comes first.” But he has been mostly silent in the past few weeks as Mr. Kuczynski’s administration unraveled.
Several lawmakers have spoken highly of him in recent days and reiterated his need for a supportive legislature.
“We need to give Martín Vizcarra room to govern, just like we did before with Mr. Kuczynski,” said Congressman Héctor Becerril of the Popular Force party.
Still, he may have a hard time finding unwavering political allies. Mr. Vizcarra is not a member of Mr. Kuczynski’s party, Peruanos por el Kambio (Peruvians for Change), which was created by the former leader so that its initials, P.P.K., would match the initials of his name. (The correct spelling is cambio.)
But even if he were, the party holds a small minority of seats in Congress. Popular Force, a right-wing party controlled by the daughter of former President Alberto K. Fujimori, is the largest faction in Congress, and it played a decisive role in Mr. Kuczynski’s ouster.
Mr. Kuczynski had narrowly averted a previous impeachment effort last December, with the help of Mr. Fujimori’s son, but his support collapsed this week after tapes surfaced that appeared to discredit the son and his allies as they tried to mobilize support for Mr. Kuczynski.
“Martín Vizcarra’s government should be one of national unity that ends the confrontation between the executive and Parliament,” Congressman Gilbert Violeta, the party’s president and one of Mr. Kuczynski’s most loyal supporters, wrote in a post on Twitter. “We are all disgusted by national politics. We owe the country an apology.”
Mercedes Aráoz, who was the second vice president under Mr. Kuczynski, will remain in that role. She had been serving as prime minister since last year.
Mr. Vizcarra will need a prime minister to lead his cabinet. He may need to appoint members of the opposition Popular Force to his cabinet, to gain its support for legislation.
“I suppose he is going to build an administration of national coalition where surely he will assign a ministerial cabinet composed of different political parties,” said Congressman Carlos Tubino, a Popular Force member.
Minutes after Mr. Kuczynski’s resignation was accepted by Congress, the police removed fencing that had prevented cars from getting near his private home in the upscale district of San Isidro.
Prosecutors said they had started investigating tapes that showed key allies of Mr. Kuczynski appearing to entice a lawmaker to back the former president in an impeachment vote.
A judge has scheduled a hearing for Saturday at 10 a.m. to decide whether to bar Mr. Kuczynski from leaving the country, since he no longer has presidential immunity. Prosecutors are investigating accusations that he was involved in money-laundering activities.
E.U. Joins U.K. in Denouncing Russia Over Poisoning of Spy
BRUSSELS — Britain’s prime minister, Theresa May, won greater than expected support from the European Union on Friday over her escalating diplomatic battle with Russia, a significant victory for a leader who has often found herself isolated in Brussels as her country prepares to quit the bloc.
After hours of discussion, European leaders issued a relatively tough statement effectively blaming Moscow for the nerve agent attack on a former Russian spy, Sergei V. Skripal, and his daughter, Yulia, on British soil.
The European Union announced the withdrawal of its ambassador to Moscow for consultations, while President Emmanuel Macron said that France and other countries, including Germany, would also take measures, prompting speculation that they would expel some Russian diplomats, as Britain did in response to the attack. Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and Denmark are among nations expected to take action as soon as Monday.
— EU Council Press (@EUCouncilPress) March 23, 2018
“We consider this attack as a serious challenge to our security and European sovereignty, so it calls for a coordinated and determined response from the European Union and its member states,” Mr. Macron said at a joint news conference with the German chancellor, Angela Merkel.
In a declaration of “unqualified solidarity” with Britain, issued early Friday, the European Union said it agrees with the British assessment that “it is highly likely that the Russian Federation is responsible and that there is no plausible alternative explanation.”
The statement followed long talks in which Mrs. May described the reasoning behind Britain’s conclusions that the Kremlin was behind the attack in the quiet cathedral city of Salisbury, including its identification of the chemical used — a strain of the nerve agent Novichok — and its belief that Russia has produced this substance in the last decade.
Welcoming the E.U. response, Mrs. May said it was right that European nations were “standing together” because the hostile challenge Russia poses “respects no borders, and it is a threat to our values.”
In response, Dmitri S. Peskov, the spokesman for the Russian president, Vladimir V. Putin, said that he “did not know what the heads of the E.U. states agreed with” when they offered their support to Britain, as Russia was not given any information.
“We don’t agree with this and repeat that Russia had absolutely nothing to do with the Skripal case,” he said.
Sergei Zheleznyak, a lawmaker from the United Russia party, said that the European Union, under pressure from London and Washington, “was forced to concoct a statement that is vague in content and politicized in essence.”
The declaration was a somewhat surprising success for Mrs. May, who has often found herself at odds with her European counterparts as she negotiates Britain’s exit from the bloc, a process known as Brexit. The text was tougher than one agreed to earlier this week by European Union foreign ministers after talks attended by Britain’s foreign secretary, Boris Johnson.
The issue of relations with Russia divides European Union nations sharply, and there has been pressure from some to lift economic sanctions against Moscow, so Britain has not pressed for additional steps of that kind. However the Irish Prime Minister, Leo Varadkar, said there was talk of the existing measures being renewed for a 12-month period; currently they have to be rolled over every six months. In any event, the Skripal case has reduced prospects of them being relaxed anytime soon.
Before the summit meeting, Mr. Putin spoke by phone with three European Union leaders, the Kremlin announced, a reminder that Moscow has allies within the bloc.
Several countries, including Cyprus and Greece, have close ties to the Kremlin and have been reluctant to take a tougher line. But in traditional European Union style, they agreed to the latest text after extracting concessions on other issues — in this case, wording critical of Turkey’s actions in the Eastern Mediterranean and the Aegean, the site of tensions over drilling for gas.
Though the European Union’s show of support for Britain is so far largely symbolic, it suggests that even after Brexit, London could retain close ties to the bloc on foreign policy, security and defense. It also underscored the strength of Anglo-French cooperation on such issues, with France taking the lead in pushing for a tough, Europe-wide, response. Mr. Macron said that in the poisoning case the French had been asked for “technical cooperation” by the British, and had reached similar conclusions about Russian culpability.
Yet, this time Mrs. May was arguing as the leader of a big member nation from inside a European summit. After next March, Britain’s prime minister will no longer attend such meetings, making the prospect of such a unified European response to a British concern less likely.
On the broader Brexit agenda, things will undoubtedly get difficult again soon. European Union leaders agreed on Friday to the terms of a 21-month transition deal to prevent a “cliff edge” change in trading rules when Britain officially leaves the bloc next March.
The leaders also paved the way for far-reaching talks on a future trade partnership, though there is still no agreement on how to avoid border checkpoints on the frontier between Northern Ireland, which is part of the United Kingdom, and Ireland, which will remain in the European Union.
On trade discussions, Mr. Macron took an uncompromising stance over Britain’s intention to quit the European Union’s single market, which lays down common rules and standards for goods and many services.
“If you are out of the single market you are totally out of it,” he said, adding that, to preserve its integrity, “Europe will stand united.”
Trump Just Pushed the World Trade Organization Toward Irrelevance
GENEVA — The handsome stone edifice that serves as the headquarters for the World Trade Organization rises like a fortress over Lake Geneva, projecting an air of impregnability. But lately the institution looks vulnerable, sowing worries that global commerce itself may be in jeopardy.
As the United States accuses China of predatory trading practices while doling out unilateral punishment, the trade organization tasked with preserving the peace appears marginalized.
The latest indication came on Thursday, when President Trump effectively bypassed the trading organization in announcing plans to impose tariffs on as much as $60 billion worth of Chinese imports, from electronics to running shoes. By Friday morning, China was threatening to retaliate with tariffs on some $3 billion worth of imports from the United States.
Diplomats and trade officials said the American action — if followed through — would flout W.T.O. rules, given that the United States would be imposing tariffs without first adjudicating its grievances. Chinese retaliation would similarly deviate from W.T.O. rules.
The W.T.O. fancies itself a United Nations for global commerce, a place where its 164 member nations convene to hash out clear rules of engagement, seeking to defuse conflict. But as the United States and China, the two largest economies on earth, edge closer to a trade war, the organization established in 1995 to prevent such hostilities appears increasingly impotent.
In an interview on Thursday, just before Mr. Trump’s announcement of the tariffs on China, the body’s director general, Roberto Azevêdo, expressed concerns that member states were taking matters into their own hands.
“These unilateral actions may lead to an escalation of trade-restrictive measures, ending up possibly in some kind of trade war,” Mr. Azevêdo said. “I’m significantly concerned.”
Mr. Trump appeared to acknowledge on Thursday that he was circumventing the rules-based trading system, asserting that the W.T.O. “has actually been a disaster for us.”
“It’s been very unfair to us,” he said.
Yet, in a strange bit of cognitive dissonance, the Trump administration at the same time declared plans to seek justice from the body. The United States trade representative, Robert E. Lighthizer, said he planned to file a new case at the W.T.O. to try to halt Beijing’s policy of forcing foreign investors to transfer technology to China.
The administration’s China offensive followed its decision to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum imports. On Thursday, the administration significantly diminished the reach of those tariffs, exempting many of its allies — not least, the European Union.
But diplomats in Geneva said the damage to the global trading system went beyond the impact on metals, dealing a blow to the foundations of the W.T.O.
The Trump administration has justified its steel and aluminum tariffs by claiming that American national security is imperiled by a dependence on imported metals. Trade experts have heaped scorn on that claim, noting that the United States already produces more than two-thirds of the steel it uses.
The Trump administration’s invocation of national security broke with a deep-seated collective understanding that such claims are verboten as justification for tariffs. Once one country makes such a claim, the argument goes, others feel irresistible pressure to manufacture national security worries to protect their own industries.
Trade disputes at the W.T.O. involving Russia and Ukraine will almost certainly feature the invocation of national security concerns to justify impediments to trade. The same goes for cases involving the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.
“It’s no longer unprecedented,” Mr. Azevêdo said. “But I still believe this is not the best way to go.”
Quiet and orderly, Geneva is generally not a place of drama. But recent weeks have generated anxiety and fear among the bureaucrats and diplomats who make up the trade organization.
Many said Mr. Trump had effectively downgraded the W.T.O. to an optional stop that can be skipped by countries willing to break with rules and tradition in pursuit of self-interest.
Many assumed that Mr. Trump was using extreme actions as a prelude to negotiation. They cited the fact that the steel and aluminum tariffs initially were to apply to every steel producer on earth and now apply to only a handful of countries, including China.
Diplomats and trade organization officials acknowledge that the aggressive posture of the United States is in part an outgrowth of a substantial failure by the W.T.O. to update its rules to contend with China’s rise.
Back in 2001, when China gained admission to the trade organization, it was supposed to be the beginning of a transformative opportunity for the world. China would gain access to global markets for its wares, while the rest of the planet would gain entry to China. Some argued that China’s integration into the world economy would encourage its leaders to further embrace market forces and eventually democracy.
In the years since, China has absorbed staggering amounts of foreign investment — much of it from the United States — erecting factories that have churned out products shipped to ports around the world. But persistent impediments have limited the chances for foreign investors to cash in.
China has forced foreign companies to engage in joint ventures with Chinese counterparts while transferring technology to China. Chinese state-owned companies have remained a central force in the Chinese economy, securing sweetheart credit arrangements from government-owned banks, cut-rate energy supplies and other subsidies.
China’s president, Xi Jinping, has used its growing commercial might to redouble the power of the state, cracking down on dissent.
Officials and diplomats now concede that the notion that inclusion in the global trading body would encourage China to embrace liberal values is a failure.
But the consequences of that failure are sowing worries that the future of the rules-based trading system is on the line.
The W.T.O. is the direct descendant of a global trading pact reached at the end of World War II, fueled by the idea that trade across borders minimizes prospects for war.
“If the member countries simply begin to take matters into their own hands, disregarding all these principles, all these concepts, we may be in a situation where the global economic environment could deteriorate very fast,” Mr. Azevêdo said. “These measures tend to exacerbate nationalistic sentiments. They tend to exacerbate intolerance.”
He fretted that the United States continued to block the appointment of new judges to a W.T.O. appellate body that renders judgment on trade disputes between countries.
The United States has long complained that the process is slow and unfair, relying on archaic rules about fair pricing in the global economy. But Mr. Azevêdo said the Trump administration had offered no proposals for how to improve the process, while simply refusing to replace judges whose terms expired.
“What is the point of having agreements if there is no means of promoting enforcement?” he asked. “The appellate body situation, if we don’t address it, could lead not now but in the future to a paralysis of the dispute settlement mechanism. This would compromise the whole system.”
Shock As NSCDC Officials Opens Fire On Commuters In Enugu
ENUGU— Heavy protests by irate youths broke out yesterday in Enugu at the popular Milliken Hill after several passengers met their untimely death following gunshots fired at a moving commercial transit bus by an operative of the National Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC.
The commercial vehicle which later got mesmerized in an inferno with shattered widescreens and glasses caused by the trigger-happy civil defense officials, was heading towards Ngwo Community; a suburb in Enugu metropolis.
One of the protesters, a commercial bus driver who spoke with our Correspondent, said they are not giving up until justice is served in the case involving the NSCDC officials who fired the shot.
According to an eyewitness, it has not been long the commercial bus left the popular Enugu New Market, when armed civil defence officials asked the driver of the bus to terminate further movements.
However, the driver allegedly refused to halt as demanded and sped-off while the NSCDC officials chased the bus on their Hilux van.
On getting to the end of the road, the civil defence officers opened fire on the commercial bus, causing the driver to veer-off the track and crash into the deep valley.
“Trouble began when a bus driver allegedly stopped and picked a passenger from a spot that was considered unlawful and when NSCDC officials accosted him, he zoomed off.
“The bus was chased by the NSCDC officials in a tricycle and it burst into flames when it felled into a ditch.
“Right inside the valley, the vehicle bursted into a huge fire, leading to death of about eight passengers in the vehicle,” the eyewitness claimed.
The unfortunate development sparked wide protests by the association of commercial bus drivers and other residents of Ngwo community whom were dispersed by barricades and gunshots fired in the air by officials of NSCDC as they ventured towards their headquarters located near New Market.
The burnt remains of a passenger, one of the victims of the incident, was seen trapped under the vehicle, which was lying on its back inside the valley while the only surviving lady was taken to an undisclosed hospital by the Police where she is currently receiving treatment.
An official of the Federal Road Safety Corps, who was at the scene of the crash, informed our correspondent that the remains of some other passengers who died in the crash were moved to an undisclosed hospital morgue.
A towing van was eventually brought to lift the commercial vehicle, after which the trapped, burnt remains of the last passenger was recovered and moved by an ambulance to the morgue of Eastern Nigeria Medical Center, Enugu.
Police intervenes as protests rises, says we’ll bring perpetrators to book.
Meanwhile, the Enugu State Police Command has said it has commenced investigation into the alleged killing of a commuter by an official of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC).
The Command’s Public Relations Officer, SP Ebere Amaraizu, disclosed in Enugu on Thursday that the incident took place at about 10 a.m. on Thursday.
It took the intervention of the Commissioner of Police, Mr Mohammed Danmallam and other top functionaries of the state to restore normalcy to the New Market Road.
Danmallam’s arrival saved the situation as commuters were all trapped as angry residents barricaded the New Market Road.
Briefing newsmen shortly after calming down the protesters, the commissioner described the incident as unfortunate.
He said that the police would not allow anyone to jeopardize the peace in Enugu State.
“What happened is very unfortunate, especially with the peace we are enjoying in the state. This kind of thing should not be allowed.
“Investigation has started. We asked people who witnessed what happened to come forward and give us discreet statement, which will help in our investigation.
“We are assuring them that whoever is involved is going to be brought to book.’’
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