USAfrica: Despite Gowon and Obasanjo’s distortions, vindication of the Biafran generation continues. By Nkem Ekeopara
USAfrica: Despite Gowon and Obasanjo’s distortions, vindication of the Biafran generation continues.
By Nkem Ekeopara
Exclusive USAfricaonline.com commentary.
USAfrica, March 8, 2012: Since January 12, 1970 when the Nigeria-Biafra 1967-1970 war ‘ended’, the former Nigerian military dictators, Generals Olusegun Obasanjo and Yakubu Gowon have persistently told the world that the late Biafran President, General Chukwuemeka Odumegwu-Ojukwu misled his people into the Nigeria-Biafra War. They used every opportunity that came their way to sell this lie hoping that by frequently doing so the lie will stick till eternity. They were mistaken!
Even on the transition of Ojukwu the Great who died on November 26, 2011), these men have not left their habit of lying about the root causes of the war, thinking, perhaps, that they need a lot of lies to cover their hands massively stained with the blood of millions of our people, especially women and children sent to their early graves through strafing of markets, churches and schools, and through a total blockade that turned millions into skeletons before they died undignified.
Gowon’s so-called tribute to our departed beloved hero was a mere attempt to confuse any undiscerning mind. From saying in the past that Ojukwu misled his people, Gowon is now saying that be believes that he was misguided.
The fact that Gowon is now oscillating between ‘he misled his people’ and ‘he was misguided’ no matter what else he says, shows that he is yet to come to terms with his grievous errors in repudiating the Aburi Accord and unilaterally dismantling the four regional structure and creating states instead, two disingenuous acts that provoked the declaration of Biafra as a sovereign state.
Obasanjo in his own usual virulent and uncouth ways was credited to have said at the moment of our grief that he tried to get Ojukwu the Great to apologise for the war. Who really did Obasanjo try to get to apologise for the war? The man who after the first wave of pogroms in 1966 convinced his kinsmen to return to the North after assurances that their safety was guaranteed only for them to be slaughtered in greater number in their abode and their places of business, work and worship?
Just who did Obasanjo try to get to apologise for the war? The man who went to Aburi with Gowon and other interested parties to seek for a peaceful resolution of the crisis and actually ensured that was achieved through the well known Aburi Accord earlier mentioned, but which Gowon blatantly dishonoured due to his lack vision and intellectual depth, and of course the selfish advice he received from his British masters?
If Obasanjo does not know, one of the decisions that pained Ojukwu the Great till he breathed his last
was asking his kinsmen to return to the North after the first wave of pogroms only for them to be massacred in greater number in the most brutal ways under Gowon’s watch in the second wave of pogroms. For anyone to recount proudly that he asked such a man to apologise particularly after he made such a ‘mistake’ and made a peaceful effort to stave off a war without success amounts to insulting the living and the dead. And it is reprehensible.
I have always known that anyone who cared to review truthfully the chain of events that forced Biafrans to defend themselves after they were attacked by Nigerian vandals masquerading as soldiers on the orders of Gowon at Garkem on July 6, 1967, will discover that those two men (Gowon and Obasanjo) were and still are economical with the truth about the war. However, with what happened from November 26, 2011 when Ojukwu the Great died to March 2, 2012 when he was interred; with what objective-minded people and media said, it is obvious who made the war inevitable. Gowon did.
History should blame Gowon for the 1967-1970 war. He and his war commanders should not only apologise for the war, but should be prosecuted for genocide and crimes against humanity. I have said it in the past and I’ll say it here again: The genocide and crimes against humanity happened in Rwanda because those who superintended the Biafran genocide were never brought to book, because they won the war.
It is disheartening that it has taken the death of Ojukwu the Great to vindicate a generation. Too often, we forget that several distinguished Igbo people, who were not even Ojukwu’s contemporaries; the likes of Dr. Akanu Ibiam, former Governor of Eastern Nigeria; Dr. M.I.Okpara, former Premier of Eastern Nigeria and Professor Eni Njoku, first Vice Chancellor of University of Lagos, and later Vice Chancellor of University of Nigeria, just to mention, but a few were all for Biafra. When Gowon says that Ojukwu ‘misled’ his people or was ‘misguided’, these are the calibre of people he means. It is this generation of leaders that Gowon and Obasanjo have been maligning till now.
Today, Nigeria is again treading the 1960s path with the blood of the Igbo being used to sustain the vampire that is this British contraption. Former President of Ghana, Flt.Lt. John Jerry Rawlings, implicitly, acknowledged the present crisis in Nigeria in his February 29, 2012, speech during the night of tributes held in Enugu in honour of Ojukwu the Great.
He noted that: “General Ojukwu in the midst of adverse circumstances chose using reconciliation as a first option.” However, he was quick to point out that he (Ojukwu) was not hesitant to defend his people militarily in pursuit of the ideals of equity. That equity which Ojukwu led his people to fight for between July 6, 1967 and January 12, 1970 is still eluding them.
The security of their lives and investments is still not assured in all parts of Gowon’s One Nigeria 42 years after the war ‘ended’. The Igbo south east region has been held back with the least number of states and local governments in Nigeria. Their zone is devoid of any meaningful federal infrastructural “presence.” There is no zone where there is marked deficit in infrastructure than the Southeast. The list is endless!
USAfrica: Ikemba ODUMEGWU OJUKWU’s farewell in Aba, today February 28, 2012, reflected a fitting tribute, historically meaningful celebration, proper regard and deserving appreciation of the greatest Igbo, in my opinion, to have ever lived (like him or hate him).
I SALUTE Aba (aka Enyimba city), the robust and fearless town I was born, bred and raised, for giving the Ikemba, our Ochiagha, Gburugburu, Oka oburu uzo, dike na ndu ma n’onwu, mgbadike anyi, a hero’s farewell.
To the Ikemba, may your valiant soul rest in peace and dignity.
We will, and I, Chido Nwangwu, will never forget to continue to tell my generation and the next about your towering courage through tempest and thunder; through sorrow, pain, tears, blood….
•Dr. Chido Nwangwu, Founder & Publisher of USAfrica multimedia networks, first African-owned, U.S-based newspaper published on the internet USAfricaonline.com; and recipient of several journalism and public policy awards, was recently profiled by the CNN International for his pioneering works on multimedia/news/public policy projects for Africans and Americans. http://edition.cnn.com/video/#/video/international/2010/07/29/mpa.african.media.bk.a.cnn.
• For seasoned insights and breaking news on these issues, log on to USAfricaonline.com and USAfrica powered e-groups including Nigeria360 at yahoogroups and USAfrica at googlegroups. Follow us at Facebook.com/USAfricaChido and Twitter.com/Chido247
• For seasoned insights and breaking news on these issues, log on to USAfricaonline.com and USAfrica powered e-groups including Nigeria360 at yahoogroups and USAfrica at googlegroups. Follow us at Facebook.com/USAfricaChido and Twitter.com/Chido247For racist Soccer actions, Liverpool’s player Suarez should be suspended. By Chido Nwangwu. Follow us at Facebook.com/USAfricaChido and Twitter.com/Chido247Nigeria’s Federal Republic of Insecurity. By Chido Nwangwu, Publisher of USAfrica, USAfricaonline.com and the Nigeria360 e-group. http://www.usafricaonline.com/2011/12/17/nigeria-federal-republic-of-insecurity-by-chido-nwangwu/ : IF any of the Nigerian President’s 100 advisers has the polite courage for the extraordinary task of reminding His Excellency of his foremost, sworn, constitutional obligation to the national interest about security and safety of Nigerians and all who sojourn in Nigeria, please whisper clearly to Mr. President that I said, respectfully: Nigerians, at home and abroad, are still concerned and afraid for living in what I call Nigeria’s Federal Republic of Insecurity. FULL text of commentary at USAfricaonline.com http://www.usafricaonline.com/2011/12/17/nigeria-federal-republic-of-insecurity-by-chido-nwangwu/Related insight: USAfrica’s October 17, 2001 special report/alert: Nigeria’s bin-Laden cheerleaders could ignite religious war, destabilize Africa. By USAfrica’s Publisher Chido Nwangwu. http://www.usafricaonline.com/chido.binladennigeria.html
310 killed by Nigeria’s ‘talibans’ in Bauchi, Yobe n Maiduguri; crises escalate. USAfricaonline.com on July 28, 2009. www.usafricaonline.com/chido.ngrtalibans09.html
Related and prior reporting on the Jos crises on USAfrica, click here: http://www.usafricaonline.com/2011/08/16/10-killed-in-renewed-violence-near-jos/
News archives related to Jos, here http://www.usafricaonline.com/?s=jos
USAfrica: As Egypt’s corrupter-in-chief Mubarak slides into history’s dustbin. By Chido Nwangwu. http://www.usafricaonline.com/2011/01/30/chido-nwangwu-as-egypt-corrupter-in-chief-mubarak-slides-into-historys-dustbin-egyptians-not-waiting-for-obama-and-united-nations/
Tunisia, Egypt . . . Is Nigeria next? By Prof. Rosaire Ifedi http://www.usafricaonline.com/2011/02/13/tunisia-egypt-is-nigeria-next-by-prof-rosaire-ifedi/
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