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Friday, 7 July 2017

BIAFRA: WHO IS AFRAID OF REFERENDUM?

WHO IS AFRAID OF REFERENDUM?

By Ikechukwu Innocent Onyeji
For Family Writers Press


It is a monumental disgrace that 57 years after her independence from Britain, the question of National Unity in Nigeria is still being asked. This time, the voices to this question have become more vociferous. Mazi Nnamdi Kanu and  IPOB have stressed on the issue concerning the very faulty foundations of this Country by asking the question most Nigerians have been shying away from which is; "Should there have been an entity called NIGERIA in the first place?"

It is on record that no African went to Europe to create states for them to inhabit. No African went to Europe and forcefully joined together, several tribes in Europe who have nothing in common to become one Country. However, a lot of Literature exist, on the events that led to the British being handed over the area of West Africa that would later become Nigeria- like a Kid receiving a present at Christmas- in that infamous Conference at Berlin in 1885. Much have also been written on how the British, through mischievous treaties, political craftiness and unconscionable violence annexed the area - including more than 250 ethnic groups, a process that culminated in the unholy marriage of 1914 and officially ended on paper on October 1st 1960.

Having laid that background, I want to therefore state categorically, that no tribe have embraced the One Nigeria concept more than Biafrans collectively and the Igbo people in particular. This point is buttressed by the fact that they were in the North and other parts of Nigeria doing businesses and coexisting harmoniously with the other tribes of Nigeria, way before Lugard finalised the Union of Nigeria with the 1914 amalgamation. Unfortunately, they have paid dearly and have continued to pay heavily for that fierce sense of adventure and enterprising Spirit. What began as  conscious efforts by some young military officers, that have a healthy representation from all tribes in the country was wrongly interpreted as an "Igbo Coup" and since then, the Igbos have been scapegoated, and excluded from the grand scheme of things in the political landscape of Nigeria.

They have since suffered a pogrom; a Genocide termed Civil War; a brutal economic asphyxiation - as a result of Awolowo's £20 policy; it has become almost like an annual event for Igbos to be killed in the North on any slightest provocation; states and regions were spuriously created to cause disunity between them and their sister ethnic groups, so as to make it easier for them to be divided and conquered effectively, while siphoning and stealing their resources to feed their enemies; census figures have been forged so as to clandestinely grant an overwhelming majority to a particular tribe and further subjugate the people of Old Eastern region, with the aim of rendering Biafrans politically handicapped. The recent controversy surrounding the way the South East Development Bill was shut down on the floor of the National Assembly proves this later point further.

Yet, Biafrans have emerged out of political gimmicks with nothing but their deep sense of pride and their unquenchable desire to succeed against all odds intact. Thank God for the efforts of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu and IPOB, they have a chance of  finally getting to live in a Nigeria that is based on equality and fair play or a chance to organise their own affairs in an Independent State of BIAFRA. But then there is this issue of a Referendum that mischief makers are quick to equate with as a call for War, Violence and Treason. They quickly throw in words like War and Bombs, South Sudan, etc to create a picture of fear among feeble-minded folks, which makes me to ask aloud: "Who is Afraid of a Referendum? "

Not too long ago, the National Coordinator, or the Acting President rather, that went through Seven Hell and Seven Heavens before he can sign a Budget, emerged from a meeting with the 36 beneficiaries of this fake arrangement and promptly declared that "Nigeria is Indissoluble". It really baffles me that a Professor at law and a clergy Man to boot, who should be versed in democratic principles would take a stand to keep upholding this Lugardian Cage of horror where Justice, Freedom, Equality and fair play is a Pipe dream. A country were some people are afraid of competition and have to be given privileges masterfully disguised as Federal Character and Quota System, in order to allow them dominate other people with their disgusting mediocrity. However 'Indissoluble' Nigeria is in the minds of those Political profiteers and their British paymasters; the truth is and remains that, it is only the masses that can decide whether we should continue to live as one or not. Anything else to the contrary is against the tenets of democracy.

The Voice of the people is the Voice of God. And power belongs to the people. Or is it only in Africa that power changes and belongs to the government and comes back to the people only during elections? If the government is sure this system we are practicing ensures equality and fair play, let them put it to test in a REFERENDUM. A referendum is not a call for War. It is a passionate call by a people who no longer feel comfortable in a system that suppresses their creativity. A system that is inhumane, wicked, exploitative, supports mediocrity and multiplies poverty. A system that encourages Laziness and stifles productivity should be dismantled not supported. What other way to do that, other than to organise a referendum, to ascertain who and who are still willing to become part of that System?
A Referendum will allow any disgruntled unit of the federation to secede without recourse to violence, and fashion out a course of their own. It is a mortal sin to continue to hold people together in a union they are not willing to be part of. It is a crime against humanity.

Who said we can't be fantastic neighbours afterwards? We can have tantalising trade treaties and immigration agreements in place after secession, that is of course subject to re-negotiation and reform after a while. This will help us grow each other's economy and become stronger separately, rather than constantly suffocate each other in this monumental mess, this British enterprise called Nigeria Plc. Not to mention that secession will finally bury the ghosts of Quota System and Federal Character including the tension that it generates. Hence, it will be easier to fight corruption without incurring tribal backlash and sentiments.

It is rather sad, that some opponents of Referendum /secession are just afraid of the uncertain future. They have become so relaxed in a system that revolves around Oil and Gas that they have almost lost what it means to be creative. Biafrans have experienced a Civil War, together with a Total blockade so they quite understand what it means to be inventive in a hurry. That's how they survived the war and the inhumane fiscal policies afterwards. So they are not afraid of the aftermath of Secession.
The people who do not want to hear any alternative other than the Voice glorifying the tried and failed "One Nigeria" are the real enemies of the People.

They are the Political profiteers, the Political businessmen, the grasping evil monopolists, the Quota System Billionaires who manipulate Forex policies to become the richest men in Africa while incarcerating hard working entrepreneurs on the charges of "Economic Sabotage". They are the enemies of Nigeria. They are the ones who should be tried for Treason and not Mazi Nnamdi Kanu. They are the ones who should be hunted down by DSS and not IPOB youths, but because Nigeria is not fair and can never be fair, that is why a Referendum to facilitate a peaceful break up is the only way out of this mess. A Referendum and a Secession into different Political entities, will bring about the unravelling and spectacular fall from grace of these people. We all can finally get to live in an environment without having the fear of being Islamized or dominated by anybody.

#Biafra Referendum Now!

Edited by Orji Munachimso
For Family Writers Press

2 comments

  1. All we need is a date for referendum to vote and decide on our future - if we want to continue to be part of the Nigerian State or not. If no date is given, there’ll be no further elections in Biafra land period - starting with Enugu elections in November this year!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I know that Biafra will come, without this war. In fact, these politicians think that people are fools and will remain fools for ever. My problem is, before our independence,or even the referendum. our security(biafrans) should be very tight so as to avoid any senseless attack from our neighbors out of jealously.

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