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Wednesday 14 December 2016

Biafra: Much Ado About Operation Python Dance; A Misplaced Priority Targeted At Killing More Biafrans

14 December, 2016

Pythons are among the biggest snakes in the world, and to hunt them is dangerous and risky business. In Africa, ancient rulers used pythons for various purposes ranging from food, celebrations to even worship.

Snakes are generally delicious, with varied spiritual and medicinal values, all over the world from Africa, the Americas, Europe, and Asia. Some of our forebears, refugees and soldiers ate snakes of various descriptions for survival during the Biafra Civil War.

Some kings wore the python skin as a sign of power, while some native African cultures celebrate the rhythmic, aristocratic and authoritarian movement of the python.


For example,  Venda people of Southern Africa, use the traditional python dance for folkloric, cultural, and aesthetic purposes. There are similarities between the python line formation in the dance and the probate entrance marches that are common to historically Black (African American) Greek lettered sororities, signifying the attainment of the age of woman hood, or manhood  for an age grade.

However some traditional African Societies, including the Igbo people revere a specie of the python, known as the ball python (Python regius), also called the royal python. Royal, because rulers wore the skin as a sign of power. Like all other pythons, it is a non-venomous constrictor. This is the smallest of the African pythons and is popular in the pet trade, largely due to its small size and typically docile temperament.

This species is particularly revered in the traditional religion of the Igbo people. It is considered symbolic of the earth, being an animal that travels so close to the ground. Even among many Christian Igbos, these pythons are treated with great care whenever they happen to wander into a village or onto someone’s property; they are allowed to roam freely or are very gently picked up and placed out in a forest or field away from any homes.

Read also:Biafra: Buhari Has Monopolized The Nigerian Judiciary: Rendering Judges Useless

Pythons as I know, do not dance in Nigeria, and there is no record of such a dance in history. This dance by the Nigerian Army, must be a sinister dance, a strange code name for an unknown operation, which calls for extreme caution by Ndigbo especially the youths.

The Army operation code names in the South in recent times instill fear, intimidation, and oppression in the minds of their target communities.

First was the “Operation Crocodile Smile” in the South-South swampland region. Some species of Crocodiles indeed shed tears after a sumptuous meal according to the national geographic.

It is presumed to be a tear of joy, which means that the Crocodile smile portends the joy in expectation of great killings, hence the public out-cry against that operation.

Read also:Biafra: Agitation Takes A New Dimension, As IPOB Malaysia Showcased Biafra To The World Through Sports

What then could anyone make of a dancing python in Igbo land, and why at this time of peace in that region compared to regions where twin bomb blasts killing scores of people and Boko Haram attacks was recently recorded? This operation in the Southeast is just a misplaced priority from the Nigerian Army, considering the increase in Boko Haram attacks in the North-eastern part of Nigeria in recent times.

How many operations python dance have the Army set up in the killing field in Southern Kaduna, Borno, Maiduguri, Zamfara and other volatile areas in the North?

A huge carnivorous snake, its dance must mean, a dance of joy in expectation of a big kill! The python kills by crushing the ribs and bones of its victim, asphyxiating it to death before consuming it.

This code name therefore could mean an operation to asphyxiate Igbo land. It could be targeting our spirituality, distracting Igbo people to look away from their God, depend on peripheral, and ephemeral mundane pursuits, while the enemy sowed tares in their gardens, their youths.

Read also:Biafra: A Call For UN, World Leaders, Others To End Human Rights Violations Against Biafrans

It could also include the crushing of the spirit of commerce and trade in the Southeast through overwhelming presence of soldiers, inflicting traffic snarls, heavy gridlocks to commuters and provoking Igbo youths to reaction, that will make the carnivorous python dance in blood.

Travellers and users of the eastern highways are now facing a nightmare and difficult times as the festive season draws closer due to the traffic congestion caused by agents of the Nigerian army who imposed road blocks on strategic entrances to the Southeast which is now affecting the vehicular flow of traffic.

According to the Vice President of the Association of Luxury Bus Owners of Nigeria (ALBON), Prince Emeka Mamah who expressed fears that if the situation remains the same till Christmas, travelling to the East for the festivities would be nightmarish for the Easterners said that “in the past few days, the traffic congestion caused by the Operation Python Dance road blocks was so bad that many of our buses and passengers slept on the road while some trips lasted close to 48 hours.”

Read also:Biafra: “Nigeria is Labouring Under Curse, Release Nnamdi Kanu And Stop Deceiving Nigerians”— Prophet Nwoko Lambasts Buhari, Obasanjo And S-West Religious Leaders

The timing of this operation from reports; November to December 2016 is instructive. This is the period Igbos all over the world are likely to be returning home to celebrate the Christmas, being the most homogeneously Christian region in Nigeria.

The operation has come at a time, when the Nigerian Army has issues with Amnesty International, where the former has engaged in fruitless denials of killings of unarmed, peaceful and  praying pro-Biafra protesters from the region of which undeniable live video clips abound in the social media.

The operation is obviously targeting IPOB, and Igbo youths in general, and increasingly, the Army is being used to punish, intimidate, harass and oppress the people they are trained and established to defend.

Read also:Biafra: The Decaying State of Justice in Nigerian Judiciary, As Truth Is Removed From Courtrooms

The operation no doubt, is also a measure intended to stop the agitation for an independent state of Biafra and destabilize Ndigbo by laying siege in the region to continue the inhumane killing of Biafra activist who are demanding for an independent state.

The Southeast zone had faced much hatred, marginalization, harassment and killings from the Nigerian security forces since the beginning and end of the civil war and this operation is simply to continue the genocide against the Biafran people.

And Ndigbo lost their Governors! as the likes of Willie Obiano of Anambra state wasted no time in showing his support for the operation.


Governments must instead, initiate creative means, using Non-Governmental Organisations, interfacing with community leadership to develop ways to combat and reduce kidnapping and other social challenges to help the society, and dismantle this macabre python dance, which is a needless wasteful show of raw power, when mixed with the recent ban on vehicles importation to complicate Igbo citizens’ life.

Pythons swallow other animals to live and grow, no python will swallow any Igbo man. The Nigerian government should stop treating Igbo land as a conquered territory. Since Ndigbo survived the civil war, no machination of the Nigerian government can intimidate them as our oppressors will go back in shame.

By Chukwuemeka Chimerue
Published By Nwosu C.S
For Biafra Writers


  1. That is why it is called ZOO. the whole world has seen that Nigeria is really a hell fire where there is no rule of law and no regard for human life. Unity is not by force and buhari can not force Biafrans to remain in this hell fire called Nigeria


  3. The Operation Python Dance in Southeast at a time of the most holy season of the year - Christmas and a region that is mostly peaceful is the height of executive rascality and condescension against Ndigbo. I'm stunned that no single Igbo leader - political, religious, elders, etc., have condemned this massive presence of military forces in Southeast region. This is pure insanity on the part of Buhari and intolerable.


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