*and a foregone conclusion*
Biafra was born when, in spring of 1967, leaders from the various ethnicities of the areas encompassing the old Biafara kingdom, declared their independence from Nigeria, having been forced back into their homeland by the marauding blood-thirsty Hausa-Fulani, who in 1966 murdered 100,000 Biafrans, with the support of their collaborating Yoruba opportunists. Biafra was born following exhaustive consultations of a kind that did not take place in the transmutation of the Igbo and numerous ethnic groups into the British-birthed cage called Nigeria.
The Biafra deal was signed, sealed, and delivered to the people precisely in May 30, 1967. The ethnicities constituting Biafra designed this package for their survival, having exhausted all options for peace with Nigeria, including the Aburi Accord, concluded in Ghana while the killings of Biafrans were still going on in the northern and western portions of Nigeria. In particular, the Igbo Nation left Nigeria formally on this date (though they left physically and spiritually in 1966 after the senseless massacres) and never came back, again, never.
What has taken place in Igbo Biafra ever since is Nigeria’s military occupation of our homeland which, as the distinguished scholar Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe presciently predicted in his book Biafra Revisited (Africa Renaissance, 2006) must end one day, as the latest campaign for the realization of New Biafra suggests. There was a country indeed, which never died, and will never die or if considered dead is resurrected in a perfect form – whether or not our detractors in their ignorance and hateful vituperation think otherwise.
The Igbo Nation, though part of this new nation, is solo in the project yet open to willing partners: call it Biafra, Lower Niger or some other name, comprising a coalition of ethnic nationalities of the willing embedded in a commonality of interests. Whereas the entire homeland of these ethnic nationalities remains the focus of conspiratorial gang-up by imperialist Britain and its collaborators, there is no gain saying that the Igbo Nation, a major ethnic nation in the Nigerian (dis)union, is the ultimate target for the evil of these neo-oppressors that is fated to fail.
The deliberate marginalization is not only in place, the continued divide-and-conquer strategy against the Igbo versus its neighbors stay on course too, while the stealing of their resources goes on unabated. God forbid! The bottom line for the Igbo Nation is freedom from the oppressive graveyard called Nigeria, regardless of any excuses.
However, Biafra nation with more than one ethnic nationality will be a willing and natural choice of all stakeholders where:
• Each ethnic nationality must speak for itself
• Each ethnicity must control its political space
• Each ethnicity must grow at its own space
• Each ethnicity must control 100% of its resources
• Each ethnicity must plot its own path, among co-operating and friendly neighbors.
The Igbo are a peace-loving people, more than 2000 thousands villages in all, who before British incursion into the territories that is known today as Nigeria lived in open spaces where they did NOT build fences to ward off their neighbors. They have every right to live in a peaceful environment, without fear from intimidation, envy, and unabashed hatred from any quarters.
The Igbo Nation, like all other ethnic groups in Biafra nation, also has a right to self-determination, as enshrined in United Nation human rights instruments, and the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, all of which treaties the retrogressive elements within Hausa-Fulani (the only ethnic group among the numerous ethnic groups in Nigeria that opportunistically bands itself as one), along with their Yoruba co-travelers, who, in the name of leadership run the country aground, ratified.
The Igbo and other ethnic nationalities with common interests are right now engaged in a campaign for a referendum of the kind Britain, Nigeria’s neo-colonist, granted recently to Scotland to determine whether or not they get their own opportunity, like South Sudan did, to realize their independent existence snuffed off in 1970 with Nigerian armed weapons loaned by Britain and the now defunct Soviet Union – or remain in Nigeria, an entity, as we indicated before in this announcement, they left formally in May of 1967.
This latest campaign for the restoration of the sovereignty of Igbo Nation predates General Muhammadu Buhari’s presidency; it goes back to warlord Olusegun Obasanjo’s years of terror, starting in 1999, thanks to the nationalist efforts of committed Igbo Biafra realization groups in north America like Ekwe Nche and Biafra Foundation. Many other Igbo Biafran organizations have also been in this quest across the globe, different in their methodologies yet united relentlessly on the one goal of restoration of Igbo sovereignty snuffed out in 1970 with deadly military hardware Nigeria purchased from Britain and the Soviet Union, together with its policy of starvation against Biafra’s children and other vulnerable populations.
However, no amount of military weapon can quench the desire of a people to be free, or else the great Soviet Empire would be alive to this present day, which we know it could not accomplish because of its numerous iniquities, including death for Biafrans for a supposedly progressive state.
Biafra Radio operators’ methodology anchored in non-violence is creative and deserve our commendation for that reason. The illegal incarceration of its Director, Maazi Nnamdi Kanu by the British-Nigeria state ought to be an opprobrious maneuver perplexing to discerning minds that the international community must rise up with one voice to condemn. Individuals in Igboland and elsewhere who stake their time and lives protesting the violation of Biafra citizen Nnamdi Kanu’s fundamental human rights must be respected too in their rights. The silence of the cowardice, self-interest serving Igbo leaders, legislatures, and governors is appalling to say the least. Maazi Nnamdi Kanu must be released unconditionally without further delay.
While we await the result of the pending meeting of these so-called leaders and their Ohaneze counterpart, let us quickly remind everyone as follows:
• That the validity of the entity Nigeria cobbled illegitimately in 1914 by the British overlords expired December 31, 2014
• That Nigeria currently runs on two separate Constitutional documents not worth the paper on which they were written have not been challenged
• That, to the best of our knowledge, the Northern leadership has never released any public statement wherein they unequivocally condemned the serial killings of Igbo people in their communities that dates back to 1945, including recent murders and maiming by Boko Haram, Fulani Herdsmen, and their co-travelers.
• That, to the best of our knowledge, Ohaneze, and South-East governors have yet to issue a joint statement, condemning the continued waste of Igbo lives in the north, nor have these so-called Igbo leaders demanded prosecution of these killers nor requested reparation or restitution for their Igbo victims.
• That, to the best f our knowledge, so-called South-East governors, and other Igbo leaders have yet to issue a joint statement condemning the burning of numerous Igbo churches in the North, nor demand a detection and prosecution of the perpetrators of these crimes.
• That, to the best of our knowledge, so-called South-East governors, and other Igbo leaders have yet to issue a joint statement condemning the destruction of Igbo businesses across Nigeria, and with it the livelihood of the Igbo owners of these businesses, nor made any demand for explanation, much less compensation for these unfair losses.
If you Ohaneze, South-East governors, and other so-called Igbo leaders have never taken any known actions concerning Igbo cause, what makes you think the Igbo people will listen to you now, especially on any decision that might not be popular with them? While you consider the above reminders, please demand explanation from your Hausa-Fulani and Yoruba friends these pertinent questions the international communities have been asking:
• Why many non-Igbo Nigerians despise and attribute all imaginable evils to Igbo people and yet insist they (that is, the Igbo people) must remain with them under one national roof?
• Why many non-Igbo Nigerians take delight in killing these Igbo people they so hate passionately yet desire within their country?
• Why many non-Igbo Nigerians demand Igbo relocate their businesses back to their South-East and South-South homelands even when, in the 45 years since the targeted genocide called “civil war,” there has been deliberately no federal presence in all of their areas who produce the oil product that constitute the mainstay of Nigeria’s natural-resource-based-economy?
• Why many non-Igbo Nigerians destroy Igbo businesses, impose high levies on their goods, and yet want them badly within the graveyard for Igbo ideas, lives, and property termed Nigeria?
The above questions begging for answers are just a small sample that does not begin to exhaust the list of numerous questions. Rest assured that every Igbo who exercised leadership in the name of Igbo must account for their stewardship to the Igbo Nation at the appropriate time, no matter how long it takes to garner that accountability. You have been warned!
The Berlin Conference of 1885 where European powers carved out and shared the territories of Africa among themselves ought not to remain a permanent curse to Africans. Africans must rise up in courage, to challenge the silly argument regarding “Balkanization” scourge, and free themselves from mental enslavement. Who cares if we end up with 200 sovereign states in Africa, if that is what it takes Africans to enjoy freedom and live in peace? Are natural boundaries, like-minds, and language, culture, and tradition, not major reasons for progressive states of today?
A bell rung cannot be un-rung. Contemporary events, including the now on-going campaign for referendum in Nigeria to determine the wishes of the people on how to structure their lives, points to one undeniable fact; the restoration of Igbo’s independence won in blood in 1967 is a task that must be done and its hard-earned sovereignty a foregone conclusion.
For and on behalf of the membership of:
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