Wednesday, August 23, 2017. 09:35GMT
Biafrans, Bearers Of The Brunt Of 1914 Amalgamation Blunder Can't Continue Any Further

Something happened in the world on the 1st of January, 1914. It was a big blunder and it was committed by a one-time governor of Hong Kong, a British soldier, mercenary, explorer of Africa and colonial administrator. His name was Frederick John Dealtry Lugard.

He is the reason for the killing of Indigenous People in their own land; he has left so many people untimely bereaved; rendered newly married women widows; newly born babies orphans; mothers childless and the land of the rising Sun full of bloodshed; because, out of his people's selfishness, he foolishly forced together what was called the Northern and Southern protectorates to form what is called Nigeria today.

Nigeria is majorly made up of Biafra in the Eastern part, Oduduwa in the Western part and Arewa in the North.

Amongst the three major nations mentioned above, the nation of Biafra is majorly the one bearing the brunt of the Lugard's blunder. The blunder is that he forced peaceful Biafrans with violent Hausa-Fulani.

And since that ill-consulted discordant amalgamation, especially after the independence on 1st October 1960, the people from the Eastern part of Nigeria have been at the receiving end of Hausa-Fulani-backed Nigeria brutality, injustice, marginalization and subjugation.

Obviously, unapologetic injustices are meted against the Biafrans.
Any government of the day, especially the one headed by Hausa-Fulani and Yoruba, does not only favour the North at the expense of Biafrans but it also targets Biafrans for annihilation.

From Gen. Yakubu Gowon, who supervised the merciless killing of Biafrans during the 1966-1970 genocidal war against Biafrans, to the present day Government of Gen. Muhamadu Buhari, Biafrans in addition to marginalization and injustices, have been slaughtered in their numbers without pity.

Citizens from the Biafran extraction, in comparison with their northern counterparts, have been visited with unfair treatments in education: for example, the cut-off marks given to candidates from the north are far lower than that of their Eastern counterparts.

Biafrans have received unfair treatments in the areas of job contracts, employment and general contracts: for example in the DSS national recruitment exercise done in April this year, far more slots were allocated to Hausa-Fulanis than for Biafrans; in the area of contracts grants, Biafrans can only get federal contracts through sub-contracts by the Hausa-Fulanis.

Most annoyingly, Biafra civil rights and constitutional rights have been denied them whereas their northern counterparts are enjoying same.

For instance, Charles Oputa, popularly known as Charly Boy, organised a protest in Abuja asking the absconded president of Nigeria, Gen. Muhamadu Buhari, to either re-appear or resign. But he and his group were dispersed with tear gas by the Nigerian police.

Charles Oputa is a Biafran even though he believes that the failed Nigerian state shall one day succeed.

But a group of Hausa-Fulani appeared with "I stand with Buhari" demonstration. The same police that dispersed Charly Boy's protest with tear gas were seen escorting the group of Hausa-Fulani. They were seen on horses behind the demonstrators.  This is a clear case of nepotism.

There was no record of violence in the protests of Charly Boy but when the group of Hausa-Fulani appeared, they attacked the protest of Charlyboy's group destroying things and leaving people badly injured.

Charly Boy's group and the Hausa-Fulani group were exercising their constitutional rights to peaceful demonstrations but one was dispersed and attacked while the other was escorted and protected by the police. The difference is that one was organised by a Biafran and the other Hausa-Fulani.

The above is just a tip of the iceberg. Biafrans have been raped, molested, brutalized and killed mostly in their gatherings.

For example, IPOB members who, on Wednesday 16th August 2017, were waiting for their leader's visit to Ekwulobia, Anambra state were dispersed by the Nigerian military by shooting indiscriminately, leaving some IPOB members half dead, several others badly brutalized and badly injured.

The attack of that Wednesday was the least amongst similar past attacks at different states and locations in Biafra territories. In Abia, Rivers state, Bayelsa, Enugu, Anambra etc., Biafrans have been shot dead either in peaceful protests, evangelism, church services, prayer grounds and the likes. And many Biafran youths have been taken down to their early graves as a result.

Biafrans have tried to recover from the pains of similar but more devastating 1967-1970 genocidal war against them which took the lives of approximately 3.5million Biafrans, but the more they try, the more Hausa-Fulani people show them that they can't recover.

With each bullet that hits, injures, incapacitates or takes the life of any Biafran, the trauma and pains of the war resurfaces, which is one of the reasons why Biafra must exit Nigeria - Biafrans do not want Hausa-Fulani to keep reminding them of the war and its pains. They don't want to be haunted any further by the gory memories of the past. Because the reoccurring events of killings do only remind Biafrans that they should not coexist with congenital killers.

The more painful part of it is that the international community seems to remain inhumane and mute to this plight of Biafrans, just as it remained indifferent in the 1967-1970 war, and more regrettably, the 1914 mistake of Lugard.

Only a few voices which appear to be weak have spoken out against the lawlessness of the Nigerian state and consequently, the Nigerian government is becoming increasingly proud of its masterminded extra-judicial killings  - simply because the international community has allowed it.

The International community, I believe, wants Nigeria to practise, grow and develop what will plunge her into anarchy, chaos or war, then 'peace-keeping soldiers' will be sent to rescue the horrible situation that would follow as refugees flood into safer countries seeking asylum.

Let me restate this: Nigeria was a mistake and it can be acknowledged by the way she treats Biafrans and their agitation for a freedom, in a democratic setting.
There are other countries of the world which are running democratic government just as Nigeria claims to do but agitations for separation in those countries are not treated in like manner as Nigeria does hers. People who engage in their constitutional rights to protests and gatherings are not suppressed by their governments the way Nigeria does rather round-table meetings are initiated to resolve the matters.

This round-table discussion could resolve the problems.  If it didn't, a referendum will, but Nigeria, instead of following this path of peace - a referendum - stubbornly navigates the path of violence and the civilised world and people choose not to caution her and call her to order.

I want to state that Biafrans are peace-loving people and as well strong-willed people. And their peaceful nature and approach to their agitation should not be mistaken for cowardice. Rather they believe in finding a man guilty first before parading him bound across his father's compound. Nevertheless, they reserve the right to defend themselves in the face of menace. Because when a peaceful strong man is severally pushed to the wall, the hiding strength in the man surfaces and retaliation becomes inevitable.

Therefore, since the Nigerian state has pushed peaceful Biafrans to the wall severally and the international community keeps silent, the world should blame its indifference when Biafra activates their defence mode because Biafrans can not continue to bear the brunt of Lugard's folly.

By Mazi Edozie
For IPOB Writers.
Published by Jonas Rapheal



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