Forty-four years after the Nigeria Civil war ended, veterans and sympathisers of the defunct Republic of Biafra yesterday reaffirmed their commitment to ensuring that the defunct republic is realised in their lifetime.
To buttress their determination, the Biafran war veterans unveiled a multi- million naira cenotaph in memory of their fallen heroes killed during the Nigerian/Biafran civil war.
Director of Radio Biafra, Mr. Nnamdi Kanu, stated this in an interview with journalists at Ngwo, Udi Local Government Area in Enugu State, during the maiden commemoration of Biafran Day (May 30) when the Igbo leader, late Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegwu-Ojukwu, declared the Republic of Biafra in I967.
While maintaining that they would not rest on their oars until the republic is realised, they called on all genuine Igbo people across the globe to rise up and join the crusade of putting in place the Biafran Republic.
They insisted that their agitation for freedom from the entity called Nigeria would continue until the Biafra Republic is enthroned.
Kanu regretted that despite the declaration of the ‘No Victor No Vanquished’ position after the Nigeria/Biafra civil war in 1970, successive governments, including the present Goodluck Jonathan- led administration, have continued to deliberately marginalise and make life unbearable for the Igbo nation and its people.
He stressed that it was time for the Igbo people to pull out of Nigeria, which he described as “a failed nation, where nothing works.”
Kanu, noted that it was unfortunate and painful that 44 years after the civil war ended, the federal government has bluntly refused to pay soldiers who fought on the side of Biafra all their benefits and entitlements, whereas, all their counterparts in the northern and western parts of the country have received theirs.
The Radio Biafra boss, who said despite all odds, they remained eternally grateful to the Biafra leader, late Ojukwu and others who laid down their lives for the struggle, warned the federal government not to constitute a clog in the wheel of progress of the proposed republic, saying they should allow the will of God be done, by letting the Igbo people go.
He however, wondered how any right thinking fellow would want to remain in a nation where he or she has no stake or recognition, stressing that the Igbo would soon move from bondage to the promise land where God has already prepared for them, like the Israelis when they left Egypt.
“It is the watershed in the history of the geographical expression called Nigeria. It is the aftermath of the mistake of the amalgamation of the Northern and Southern protectorates by Lord Lugard," he said.
Kanu further regretted that 47 years after Ojukwu declared the Republic of Biafra, the reasons that led to his decision were still evident "in the failed nation called Nigeria."
He decried the sufferings and agony being faced by common Nigerians as a result of corrupt and bad governance in the country.
The Baifran chief insisted that Nigeria is doomed, especially since the country is driven by world acclaimed selfish and corrupt leaders, who do not believe in the well being of the poor masses.
He pointed out that as long as the intention and purpose of the amalgamation of North and South were designed to cheat the South, the nation would never move forward, “because any country that makes injustice its watch word can also never prosper.”
According to him, "No amount of National Conference can solve Nigeria's problem because the leaders are not sincere and there is deep-rooted hatred among the different nationalities in the country."
Kanu maintained that the only panacea to Nigeria's problems is to split it into different regions, calling on the Igbo people to embrace and keep faith with Biafra, which he assured, would definitely come to reality.
Highlights of the event, which featured many Biafran war veterans from different parts of Igbo land clad in their uniforms, was the formal unveiling of the cenotaph and the official hand over of the leadership of Biafra to Kanu.