I don’t know that in the 21st century, people would be forbidden from saying “Biafra”.
I don’t know why the government and many people develop goose bumps whenever they hear the name.
In USA, states like Texas still agitate for secession after over 300 years of their independence and over 200 years of their civil war which failed at dividing the country. Many even burn American flags to show their discontent and their frustrations about US government policy.
President Barack Obama’s former pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, would preach “God damn America” instead of ‘God Bless America’ anytime he felt like.
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In the 80s, the ABS FM Stereo, Enugu, (Anambra State Broadcasting Service) adopted a “rising sun” as it’s logo. It had a flag with that logo. There was an order “from above” for them to remove it immediately!
I think that the word “Biafra” scares a lot of people especially those in power. It is a stumbling block to “One Nigeria” which is a cute way of saying “unimpeded oil flow”.
I would always say Biafra on my Facebook wall.
I still believe that I have the right to push for justice and for every people’s right to self determination. You cannot mistreat a man and then dictate to him how to react or how to vent. It is not by force!
Marriage is not by force. A forced marriage is doomed from the beginning.
Let me say without fear of sounding like a broken record, that I do not believe in One Nigeria as presently constituted. If subjugating me in Nigeria is the best way of keeping Nigeria one, then I would not subscribe to that.
If making a people live like slaves in a union would water the seeds of unity, I would then continue to stress that I have a right to disagree. I would support those that call for separation from Nigeria. You can’t continue to enjoy the suya when it is my flesh that make the suya possible.
You cannot take your dog to kill a game in the forest, only to come home and offer bones to the dog instead of meat.
One Nigeria should not be a slogan and a mantra of maintaining oil flow. It should be with terms. All must be at the table to hash out all grievances and gripes.
If Nigeria must survive in the 21st century, all must be carried along, and all terms clearly stated in a document called the Constitution.
You can’t tell Igbos (South East) that they can only have 5 states when every region has 6 and even North West have 7 states.
You can’t isolate Igbos from government, their children given limited slots in Unity Schools when they score highest in exams, qualified people playing second fiddle in ministries to ones with no qualifications etc and you look at me funny when I complain.
You cannot come to the South South, prospect for oil and leave their environment in ruins, pollute their drinking waters, farmlands etc and still isolate them from the proceeds of their oil; and not build schools, hospitals and other social amenities for them. Then you wonder why they agitate even violently.
This is not rocket science.
Like I said, if Biafra scares you, do the right thing. Eliminate the issues that make the call for Biafra and other quests for self-determination inevitable.
Justice must be done and seen to be done.
Chukwudi Nwokoye is a lawyer (LL.M.) and a former United States Marine who hails from Anambra State