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Sunday, 18 September 2016



By Paul Ihechi Alagba
For Family Writers

A notable media outlet in Nigeria, THE AUTHORITY, has lashed out on the Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari over his unguided utterances, exclusively directed at the Biafran section of National Youth Service Corps members who were among those that paid him a courtesy visit at his residence in Daura, Katsina state, during the Eid El Kabir celebrations on Tuesday September 12.

President Buhari while having a conversation with the youth corps members was quoted as saying- "Tell your colleagues who want Biafra to forget about it.
"As a military commander, I walked from Degem, a border town between the north and the east, to the border between Cameroons and Nigeria.

“I walked on my foot for most of the 30 months that we fought the Nigeria-Biafra civil war, in which at least 2 million Nigerians were killed."
The provocative remark has generated a wide range of criticisms towards the former military Dictator.
According to The Authority, Buhari's words are characterised with bigotry instincts, resulting from the President's inability to subdue his long existing animosity and bitterness towards Biafrans.

The media outlet expressed total dismay over Buhari's comment which they described as a total embarrassment to the youths who paid him a courtesy visit.
The statement by the media outlet reads-

  "At the traditional homage usually paid to the president in his home town, Daura in Katsina state during festivities, General Muhammadu Buhari, in a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity Mallam Garba Shehu, on Tuesday September 12, singled out NYSC members from the South East for taunting. Out of the about 100 youth corps members who had gone to felicitate with the president in the spirit of the Eid el Kabir, the president reportedly called out the youths from the two geo-political zones and handed them a strong message – to go tell their people that “…Biafra is wishful thinking”.

According to the statement, “Speaking specifically to corps members from the South Eastern states, the president said: “Tell your colleagues who want Biafra to forget about it” ,among other things. It is unbelievable that such an action was taken by the president who is supposed to be a father-figure to all Nigerians, especially in a democratic dispensation.

As always, President Buhari who has become accustomed to taking belligerence to everything under the sun, missed the target. Given the fact that the National Youth Corps Service scheme was set up in the aftermath of the civil war to provide a powerful integrative mechanism to unite the nation’s diverse entities, the president was perhaps ventilating his bottled up emotions to the wrong audience. It is patently pathetic that he chose an occasion like Eid el Kabir to embarrass innocent youths, all of who were not born before the war.

We at The AUTHORITY are saddened by the incessant acts of provocation by the same people whose collective action or inaction has brought the country to its knees. Why wouldn’t the president seal his lips if he had nothing good to say to his young guests who had gone to honour him amidst pervading hunger in the land? He ought to have demonstrated statesmanship and circumspection. The times call for reconciliatory moves, not bitterness.

We recall that on May 29, 2000, at the first anniversary of his administration as a democratically elected president of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo granted amnesty to 1,520 officers of Igbo extraction who were dismissed from the Nigeria Police Force for allegedly participating in the civil war as Biafrans. He also extended the amnesty to the ex-Nigerian soldiers who served in Biafra, from which no less than the Biafran leader, Ojukwu, benefitted. Their dismissals were converted to retirements from that day even as he directed the authorities to commence payment of their benefits.

The entitlements of late officers were paid to their families. That gesture by the former president was commendable, even though it came belatedly. It was interesting to note that after several years of trying to paper over serious cracks on the nation’s body politic, the Obasanjo administration had, through that singular act, recognized the need to heal old wounds as a prerequisite for the much needed national reconciliation. By that action, Obasanjo exhibited some level of magnanimity as a veteran of the civil war.

Nigerians had expected Gen. Buhari to continue from where Obasanjo stopped by extending the gesture to other agencies like Immigration, the Nigerian Customs Service, the Prisons Service and the entire civil service. Unfortunately, rather than seize the rare opportunity of his first anniversary in office as a democratic leader to display an act of prerogative of mercy, President Buhari used the occasion to attack his real and imaginary enemies in the face of a comatose national


  1. Leadership is not about animosity but about love, kindness and service to your subjects

  2. As long as Buhari lives,his hatred to igbos remains since he is happy that he has sucked and tirsted their blood.
    But one thing Buhari should understand is that the blood of the innocent Biafrans he shed both now and during 1966 to 1970 will not allow him to have peace.


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