By Dr Ibrahim Sabo Yunusa
The history of Nigeria cannot be complete without mentioning those days of doom of Nigerian civil war. The Biafra war started on July 6, 1967 to January 15, 1970, about three years. It was won by the Nigerian Army, against those agitating for the defunct Republic of Biafra, under Colonel Odumegwu Ojukwu of the then Eastern region.
Obviously, history cannot be allowed to repeat itself, this time around, thus the renew agitation of Biafra nation by the movement of Sovereign sState of Biafra (MASSOB), led by Ralph Uwazuruike, and the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB), which was orchestrated by Nnamdi Kanu through his radio station.
Surprisingly the Biafra agitation ensued when former president Jonathan was defeated in the last general election, by incumbent President Muhammadu Buhari. I recall in damning some of the nasty words of Nnamdi Kanu and I quote “When we speak the zoo trembles, that’s what happens when a cattle rearing terrorist and paedophile is your ruler. Message to every hardcore Biafra, if you find anyone village asking Awusa Foolani or Yorobber bastard, let them keep searching as we keep tweeting for Biafra lunatics.’’
The above was posted by Nnamdi Kanu, the London-based director of Radio Biafra and a leading member of a movement agitating for self determined from Nigeria to form the sovereign state of Biafra.
The wailing wailers of post election have now translated to pro-Biafran agitators, raining all sorts of abuses on Nigeria and Nigerians including its founding fathers. Indeed, Kanu sees himself as a wiseacre within his Igbo people and he has successfully brainwashed his fellow Igbos. The eccentricity of Kanu and his radio station is quite potty, though the gimmick applied by this young man who resides far-way in United Kingdom is to cause riot in Nigeria, while he lives comfortably in London.
The Nigerian Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has made frantic efforts to put an end to the illegal activities of this Biafra Radio, which is aim at tainting the image of Nigeria. Furthermore, Kanu is being detained on charges related to treasonable felony. During the recent visit of Buhari to India, the pro-Biafrans made some efforts to protest to President Buhari right at the airport, before they were thwarted by Indian security operatives.
In addition, I and many well meaning Nigerians adduce that the pro-Biafrans are just groups of hooligans and jobless youths, out to disturb the peace and tranquillity of by Nigerians. The insurgency of Boko Haram has been intractable, yet some unscrupulous elements are trying to cause mayhem.
What astonishes many Nigerians is the clamouring for war by these frivolous groups against Nigerian government, if it refused to allow Biafrans to break from Nigeria. All those who witnessed the then civil war will not allow the country to be plunged into yet another war, Nigeria is yet to recover fully from the Biafran civil war of 1967, and cannot afford another unrest .
The unorthodox approach by pro-Biafrans in their quest of a sovereign nation will continue to be at ebb. No any meaningful result will be achieved, if people resulted to violence in pursue for a positive goals. The IPOB should channel their grievances to the appropriate authority to avoid further escalation of protests, reprisal attacks and government confrontation, directly or indirectly.
An epitome, here is the South Sudan, who have agitated for its independent from Sudan, and was given on July 9,2011, but unfortunately genocide are still carried daily in the war turn zone of South Sudan, coupled with raping and wanton destruction of lives and property. This should be an eye opener. Similarly, on September 19, 2014, the Scottish went to the poles to cast a referendum for them to have their country pull out from United Kingdom (UK), but surprisingly they voted against, for them to remain in UK, all thise was done peacefully without enmity or castigation of either Prime Minister David Cameron or Queen Elizabeth either verbally or through their media houses or violent protest, thereby making them strong and vibrant for national cohesion.
Interestingly, the Igbos are seen as those who spread rampantly to all nooks and cranny more than any other tribe, both in the rural and urban areas of Nigeria doing their business activities without molestation, intimidation or hindrance from any group of people. Vociferously, this set of people are those undermining the unity and co-existence of Nigeria as one entity nation. The Ohaneze Ndigbo must wake up from its deep slumber to intervene relentlessly to bring an end to this ugly trend.
The federal government and the APC must show signs of fulfilling its electoral promises by providing job opportunities to millions of Nigerians staying idle after graduation without even a morsel to take into their mouth, because ‘’ a hungry man is an angry man’’. This will curtail the security problems besetting the country.
Religious and traditional leaders have a tremendous role to play to inculcate moral values and disciplines into their subjects, especially youths who are seen as leaders of tomorrow.
A society full of immorality and delinquencies is bound to crash sooner or later. It is my hope and prayer that things will return to normal in Nigeria.
Yunusa wrote from Bauchi.
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