Nigeria’s former President, retired General Olusegun Obasanjo has cautioned President Muhammadu Buhari that his current use of force against members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) is not a wise approach to the issue. Obasanjo stated this position during an interview in London with Newsweek magazine (September 2017): “The heavy boot is not the solution. I believe also whatever may be the frustration of any youth in any part of Nigeria; I believe secession is not the solution.”
Adding that “Those who fought in the war in Biafra will not want to fight any other war. I fought in that war and it was an unfortunate war and I said I have fought one war too many in Nigeria; I don’t want to see another.”
Obasanjo called on Buhari to dialogue with Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of the IPOB (which was declared today as a terror group by Nigeria’s Force Headquarters and proscribed by the South East Governors).
Obasanjo said, “I don’t see anything wrong in that (Buhari meeting with Kanu). I would not object to that; if anything, I would encourage it.”
“I would want to meet Kanu myself and talk to people like him, people of his age, (and ask) ‘What are your worries?’ Not only from the South-East but from all parts of Nigeria…. We need to satisfy the youth in job creation, in wealth creation, in giving them a better, fulfilled life, in giving them hope for the future. There’s no easy way out.”
USAfricaonline.com notes that the almost 32 million Igbo, known for their enterprising spirit, educational achievements, christian faith and republicanism values have agonized over the evidence and facts of discrimination in the location of any key infrastructure or industrial projects…. By Chido Nwangwu