|Unarmed Biafran gunned down by Nigerian army|
For the avoidance of doubt, am not a Biafran but am concerned at the way and manner that the Nigeria security officers engage in killing of unarmed and harmless Biafrans. These killings that I witnessed at Nkpor and its environs are totally unprovoked. I have followed the activities of the Indigenous People of Biafra under the leadership of Nnamdi Kanu since its inception and can confirm that they have never been violent, but why the Nigeria government keeps forcing them to take the part of violence is what I can’t fathom or understand.
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I attended the last year’s Biafra Heroes day celebration held at Aba and it was violent free as Biafrans are observed their trade mark peaceful rally while the security officers also behaved professionally by not provoking any violence. Maybe its because the present President of the country was just coming into power by then? Its obvious from what I witnessed at Nkpor that the order to kill Biafrans as carried out on 30th May, 2016 came from the Presidency with the knowledge of the Anambra state government.
It was so sad reading the press release from the Anambra state government condemning the Peaceful Biafrans without even condemning these killings that was carefully planned and executed by the Army. The Army was not even quelling disturbance but carrying out an ordered killings.
I travelled from my base on Saturday 28th May, 2016 and checked into a hotel same day at Nkpor so as to enable report adequately about the event in same manner that we reported about the last 2 editions (2014 and 2015).
I had to dash to Nnewi by the evening of Sunday 29th, 2016 to a pick a friend to join me in the coverage like we had agreed. On our way back to Nkpor around 8.30pm, we saw Indigenous people of Biafra members walking towards the venue of the planned heroes event. We stopped and had a brief cordial chat with them. They told us they just coming into Nkpor to peacefully honour their fallen heroes as it is a tradition worldwide for people to honour their fallen heroes. We equally informed them that we were at Nkpor to cover the event. We exchanged phone numbers.
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We were however woken up with a phone call around 1am by some of the Biafrans who informed us that they have just been attacked at Saint Edmund Catholic Church, Nkpor where they slept for the night. They informed us that 3 of them were dead already and that the Nigeria security forces where continuing with the attacks. Why will the Nigeria security outfits ambush sleeping Biafrans and accusing them of violence when they were sleeping? Who goes to the church to plan violence? Attacking sleeping people in the church is an evil act and the Nigeria security officers have a question to answer. The planned rally for the event has not even started before these attacks on unarmed Biafrans started by the Nigerian Army.
By the time we got outside of our hotel room by 5am, most junctions in Nkpor were already on lock down with combined security forces stationed in most places and not allowing any sort of movement. When we attempted to go the location that we met the IPOB the previous night, which we later understand that is close to the planned venue of the heroes day which is just a stone throw from Nkpor Park, there was no way to pass through. The road was blocked from all corners. The officers mounting the blocked road commanded us to go back asking us if we wanted to die also.
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We decided to move back and stood at Unipet Patrol filling Station opposite Nkpor Park when we saw a convoy of 5 Army Hilux patrol vehicles pass us, carrying the corpses of some Biafrans, piled up on each other in all the vehicles except the last one.
The sad thing is that we notice that the Army guys were celebrating the killings as if they won a trophy.
I overheard one telling another that we wasted them, he seemed very happy with the success they recorded with the killings. They simply congratulated each other on wasting the blood of the Biafrans. I was speechless and dumbfounded.
We couldn’t bear the sights again and then moved back to our hotel using the inside streets. We joined the crowd in front of the hotel. They too were speechless after seeing the corpses.
When I broke down and cried was round 1:30pm when another convoy blowing siren passed in front of the hotel but (this time 7 Hilux vehicles) carrying over 25 corpses of Biafrans. I could see these ones more clearly because they stopped briefly in our presence before zooming off again. The dead bodies had the IPOB Red T-shirt for this year’s celebration that some states IPOB families used. We could also see these security officers celebrating these cold blood murders.
We just decided to move into our hotel room when 2 young boys standing close to us were shot by the Army, where we were hiding near Nkpor junction (by old road). Its so sad the way and manner that the security officials operated on that day at least within Nkpor junction axis that we monitored.
The Igbo speaking mobile police officer that we spoke to at Nkpor Junction (he spoke Igbo with my friend) about the unprovoked killing confirmed that the killings were truly unprovoked but said that there is nothing he can do to stop it, as Police authorities made sure that it is mostly officers from the northern parts of the country that were detailed to lead the killing squad while they (officers of Biafran origin) were positioned to mount road blocks. He ended by informing us that there is clearly an order from above that anything about Biafra should be crushed without mercy. He even wondered why the president has failed to crush the Fulani herdsmen that are killing Biafrans, We can tell that he is sad about the killings of unarmed Biafrans.
The Nigeria government must know that the youths of the east are getting angry at this killings and if it continues, no body can tell what it will lead to as the youths that we spoke with are advocating for arm struggle as according to them, Nigeria government only understands the language of violence as those that preach peace are only taken for a fool and murdered.
I believe that it is time that IPOB leadership recognizes the fact that Nigeria is a lawless society that only understands and listens to violence. It’s time to stop being Peaceful as it’s an invitation for cold blood murders as Nigeria security officers will kill and lie about it.
Rest in Peace to all the Peaceful and Armless Biafrans killed while paying respect to their fallen heroes.
Written by John Koffi
Published By Biafra Writers