Sunday, 30 March 2014

200 died of suspected chemical weapon in Benue


Benue State Commissioner for Information, Mr Justin Amatse, has disclosed that about 200 people have so far been killed with suspected chemical weapon in the state since the attack on the people of the state began.

Benue has been under the  grip of suspected Fulani herdsmen in recent times, leading to death of several people, but the state governor, Dr Gabriel Suswam, had earlier declared the attackers as terrorists who use herdsmen as smokescreen.

The attack took a dangerous dimension during the week when over 10 persons, including women and children, were found to have died of poisonous substance suspected to be chemical weapon.

According to sources, the victims had no cuts, gun-shot wounds nor bruises on their bodies but were found stony dead after  gunmen attacked their village at Sengev community in Gwer West Local Government Area of the state.

The Information Commissioner, who spoke  to newsmen on Friday, however, said that the ugly development had caught the attention of Federal Government, as he confirmed the incident in Gwer West. He added that the death toll from the poisonous substance suspected to be chemical weapon was 200.

According to him, “the use of suspected chemical weapon on our people has been on for few weeks now while the state government is taking measures to manage this, though the frequency is rising by the day.

“Let me tell you that about 200 people with the latest one in Gwer West have been killed with poisonous substance. When you go through their bodies no cut is seen; neither gun shot or bruise in their body any time they were faced with these gunmen which shows that they died of suspected chemical weapons.”

Amatse, however said that the state government had directed the ministry of health to carry out autopsy on the victims to ascertain the cause of such death. 

Meanwhile, about 19 persons were killed and another 15 abducted  at different villages in Agatu Local Government Area of the state same day.

Sunday Tribune gathered that among those killed or taken away were women and children in the latest attack by gunmen, who razed down many houses in the area.

The council chairman, Stephen Dutse, said the attackers invaded Olegaje, Ogumogbo, Ejuma and Ogbagaji, headquarters of the local government,  simultaneously at 10.00p.m on Friday.

Corroborating the chairman, the lawmaker representing the area at the State House of Assembly, Sule Audu lamented the absence of security operatives in the affected communities.

He appealed to the security agencies in the state to deploy their personnel to the affected villages and surrounding communities in order to prevent further attacks on his people.

Contacted, police spokesman in the state, SP. Daniel Ezeala said the command was yet to be briefed on the  incident.

Saturday, 29 March 2014

U.S. blocks Christian governor from Nigeria peace talks.

The United States Institute for Peace recently brought together the governors of Nigeria’s mostly Muslim northern states for a conference in the U.S., but the State Department blocked the visa of the region’s only Christian governor, an ordained minister, citing “administrative” problems.

The visa of Plateau State Gov. Jonah David Jang, has been held up by the Obama administration for more than a year, according to Ann Buwalda of the Jubilee Project, which focuses on Nigerian human rights.

Of the 19 northern states, 12 have implemented Islamic law, or Shariah, noted Buwalda.

Jang’s visa has been tied up in security background checks described as “administrative processing” since July 2012,” she said.

“This is despite the fact that he has never violated the terms of his visa,” Buwalda said.

The USIP confirmed that all 19 northern governors were invited, but the organization did not respond to requests for comments on holding the talks without the region’s only Christian governor.

Emmanuel Ogebe, a human rights lawyer and counsel for the U.S. Nigeria law group, said the Christian governor’s “visa problems” are because of bias in the U.S. government.

“The U.S. insists that Muslims are the primary victims of Boko Haram. It also claims that Christians discriminate against Muslims in Plateau, which is one of the few Christian majority states in the north. After the [governor] told them that they were ignoring the 12 Shariah states who institutionalized persecution … he suddenly developed visa problems,” he said.

While the State Department confirmed that the USIP conference took place, the federal bureaucracy there had no comment regarding Jang’s visa issues, citing confidentiality rules.

Buwalda said it’s not unusual for the U.S. government to exclude Christians in Nigeria discussions and meetings.

“My personal observation and view is that some staff within the [State Department] have an unbalanced perception that somehow raising the persecution of Christians minimizes the persecution of Muslims or even favors Christians over Muslims,” she said.

Buwalda said that in the State Department’s “current mandate to limit reporting to ‘trends,’ a distortion results in that the ongoing violence against Christians is underreported or not reported because it is not a new trend.”

“Another contributing factor is the reporting efforts by some groups, including Western human rights reporting groups, to report only on acts of violence against Muslim communities often based on anecdotal information while whitewashing or ignoring the acts of violence perpetrated on the Christian minority community,” she said.

She said she’s found “in meetings that there is often a shallow or a distorted understanding of the dynamics on the ground relying on sources of information which are dubious and unreliable.”

“It is our goal to provide accurate and factual reporting which truthfully describes acts of violence, the religious identity of the victims, and root causes which does not shy away from referencing the declarations of the persecutors as to why they are carrying out the acts of violence.”

Center for Security Policy Senior Fellow Clare Lopez said that based on the administration’s actions regarding Islamic issues, exclusion of the Christian governor is not a surprise.

“Remember how long it took for the State Department to add Boko Haram to the Foreign Terrorism Organizations list? This is despite evidence of its relationships with al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb and al-Shabaab,” Lopez said.

She said the State Department “is steadfastly refusing to admit, even now, that Boko Haram’s rampages against Christian communities in Nigeria have anything whatsoever to do with Islam.”

Lopez said the Obama administration effectively is complicit with Islamic law.

“This [administration] knowingly and deliberately has subordinated its decision-making to the Islamic jihad and Shariah narrative,” she said. “We know that all training that would educate DoS (DHS, DoD, DoJ, etc.) officials and employees on down to local law enforcement about the threat from Islamic jihad and Shariah systematically has been purged from the … curriculum. Trainers and instructors who formerly taught such subjects are blacklisted,” Lopez said.

Lopez emphasized that the administration’s actions are deliberate and an abrogation of members’ oaths of office, adding: “It may well be prosecutable – material support to terrorism as well as aiding and abetting the enemy in time of war.”

The White House has not responded to WND’s request for comment.

Buwalda said the U.S. government blames the Christians for the violence.

“In fact, unrelated to the governor’s visa issue, three of our Nigerian colleagues including a former congresswoman from Plateau State and I participated in a Department of State meeting with high level officials last year in May or June [who] very bluntly declared how the governor of Plateau State was to blame for unrest in his state,” Buwalda said.

“I was shocked at the hostility.”

Ogebe wrote in his blog, “Justice for Jos,” that Boko Haram has made clear that it will not attack mosques.

“Boko Haram has gone out of its way to emphasize that it does not attack Islamic places of worship. However it does assassinate Muslim critics after worship when they are vulnerable. Boko Haram’s first attack inside a mosque in the five-year insurgency occurred in 2013. Their targets were Muslims who had cooperated with the authorities against the terrorists. It was not a random attack on Christians as has been the case,” Ogebe wrote.

Ogebe said there are specific circumstances for Boko Haram to attack a Muslim.

“Recently, Boko Haram acknowledged killing a Muslim cleric who had been critical of them. It is likely the terrorists’ first claim of responsibility for the killing of a fellow Muslim,” Ogebe said. “The question remains – why is the U.S. downplaying or denying the attacks against Christians?”

To support the claim, Ogebe cites the executive summary of the State Department Human Rights report, which referenced Boko Haram violence but neglected to mention the victims’ religious identity, except for the reference to a mosque attack.

“Throughout much of the country, Boko Haram perpetrated numerous killings and attacks, often directly targeting civilians,” he wrote.

“During the year, the sect, which recruited child soldiers, claimed responsibility for coordinated assaults on social and transportation hubs in Kano; an attack on the town of Baga; multiple attacks on schools and mosques; an attack on the town of Benesheik; and the killing of government, religious, and traditional figures.”

On Feb. 17, the terrorist group Ansaru, believed to be a Boko Haram faction, kidnapped seven foreigners in Bauchi State, he pointed out.

Ogebe noted the other attacks listed were all against Christian targets.

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Nigeria's 100 Years Of Dysfunctional Unity.

The reason they convened a National Conference to discuss Nigeria’s future last week is that it’s the hundredth anniversary of the unification of the northern and southern protectorates into one nation. Well, one colony, actually, since .the whole place would remain under British rule for another half-century. And the one subject the delegates are banned from discussing is whether unification was really such a good idea.

It was an excellent idea from the viewpoint of the British colonial administrators, of course. Not only was it tidier, but it crippled resistance to British rule. When you force five hundred different ethnic groups with as many languages into a single political entity, they will spend more time fighting one another than the foreigners. (Even Nigeria’s name was invented by the British.)

A century later, the country is still riven by ethnic and religious divisions that distort both its politics and its economy. Nigeria is one of the world’s biggest oil producers, but two-thirds of its 170 million people live on less than $2 a day and even the big cities only get electricity four hours a day. It ranks 144th on Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index, which means in practice that most public funds are stolen.

In the mainly Muslim north, an extremist Islamic insurgency by a group called Boko Haram (“Western Education is Forbidden”) killed more than 1,300 people in the first two months of this year. Or rather, they and the brutal and incompetent army units who respond to their attacks with indiscriminate violence together accounted for 1,300 lives.

And when Lamido Sanusi, the internationally respected head of Nigeria’s central bank, accused the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) of failing to repatriate $20 billion of the $67 billion received for oil sales between January 2012 and July 2013, President Goodluck Jonathan suspended him for “financial recklessness and misconduct.”

“Failing to repatriate” actually means that the money stayed abroad and disappeared into the foreign bank accounts of powerful Nigerians. This is normal: it has been estimated that two-thirds of the $600 billion that Nigeria has earned in the past fifty years from selling its oil was lost to corruption by the political and business elite. What was unusual was for a member of the elite to challenge the practice openly.

Sanusi, who was named Central Bank Governor of the Year in 2010 by Banker magazine, was promptly accused of links to Boko Haram in a document circulated to Nigerian websites that was traced back to President Jonathan’s social media adviser. It was a typical establishment response, and it was total nonsense. But a depressing number of southern Nigerians will believe almost anything about Sanusi simply because he is a northern Muslim.

He is actually a member of the northern aristocracy – his grandfather was the emir of Kano – and an Islamic scholar who condemns Wahhabist fundamentalism. He is one of Nigeria’s foremost advocates of a tolerant, inclusive Islam: “Even a cursory student of Islamic history knows that all the trappings of gender inequality present in the Muslim society have socio-economic and cultural, as opposed to religious roots,” he said recently.

Yet the mistrust between Muslims and Christans, northerners and southerners, is so great that Sanusi’s whistle-blowing is seen by many southerners as a political operation aimed at the Christian president. They believe this even though they also know that the money really was stolen by people at the NNPC, and that Goodluck Jonathan is protecting them because some of it was going to be used to finance his re-election campaign next year.

And why does Jonathan need so much money? To buy the support of the northern power-brokers, who will then deliver the votes to keep him in the presidency. Then he will be able to go on protecting his friends. It’s a closed system, and it’s making Sanusi more radical by the moment.

Recently he told the Guardian: “If the population as a whole starts protesting what is going on in our country, how many of them can they kill?” He added that the ousted leaders of Ukraine and the Arab spring nations “never did half as much damage to their countries as our rulers have.”

But Sanusi is unlikely to bring the system down. That is why, at the National Conference on Nigeria’s future that meets in Abuja over the next three months, some people will certainly defy the ban and start talking about re-dividing Nigeria between north and south. They will mostly be southerners, who resent the large amounts of oil income that the federal government transfers to the northern states that desperately need the money.

Northerners will fiercely resist the idea of partition because they would be left running a country only slightly better off than Mali. (Despite the transfers of oil revenue, 72 per cent of the population in the North lives in poverty; in the South, only 27 percent does.) And in the end, nothing will happen, because cutting off the North would spoil the game.

Nigeria is unquestionably the most dysfunctional large country in the world, but it will hang together because all the elites benefit from the dysfunction, which allows them to steal massive amounts with complete impunity. Indeed, you might say that Nigeria survives because it is dysfunctional.

Gwynne Dyer is an independent journalist whose articles are published in 45 countries.

SOURCE.

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Best Collection of Tweets by the Indigenous People of Biafra via Radio Biafra London.


Twitter helps you share ideas and information instantly, without barriers. Below lies the finest collection of millions if not billions of tweets constantly sent to prominent people across the world, by the indigenous people of Biafra(IPOB) via Radio Biafra London(RBL) as part of their media campaign to restore the sovereign state of Biafra.

If you are a Biafran, login to your Twitter account or create a new one and start tweeting right now and constantly from now on. Copy and Paste and Tweet. Continue non-stop. If you get to the end, start afresh. You have about 120 tweets or more daily limit. When you are prevented from tweeting as a result of this limitation, create a new account or wait until the next few hours to continue. If you are suspended, do not worry, you can create a new account or report to Twitter with this LINK. Tell them that "I will not do it again". NOTE:- In most cases, you are suspended because of over-following. ADVICE: Do not follow many people without many people following you, all in a short time. That way, you will avoid suspension.

What are @ and # ? They are the most important elements of tweeting. The @ symbol is used to refer to the person that will receive your tweet e.g @BarackObama. The # symbol is called a hashtag which is the topic or keyword that you are tweeting about e.g #Biafrans. Now you know, make your own tweets.

The great tweets listed below will be constantly updated and reshuffled. You can translate them to any language that you wish to tweet in. Please leave a comment below with your own Tweet-suggestion and it will be included in the list and tagged with your name as the contributor if you so desire. Thanks and remain blessed.


Tuesday, 25 March 2014

If They Fail To Give Us Biafra, Somalia Will Look Like A Paradise - Nnamdi Kanu


 SOURCE

The Director of Radio Biafra in the UK, Nnamdi Kanu says delegates at the ongoing National Conference should negotiate for a secession of Biafra or face the wrath of the Igbo people. He said inasmuch as he respects the freedom of people to converge and speak their minds, the right of the people of south-eastern Nigeria to form their own nation should also be respected.


Speaking in an interview with SaharaTV's Rudolf Okonkwo over the weekend, Nnamdi Kanu posited that the national conference is a waste of time since the same people who created the problems of Nigeria are the ones converging ostensibly to seek a solution. He slurred the delegates representing the Igbo people and threatened them not to return to Igboland if they fail to negotiate a secession from the Nigerian federation. 

"If they fail to give us Biafra, Somalia will look like a paradise compared to what will happen to that zoo. It is a promise, it is a pledge and it is also a threat to them" he portended. "If they do not give us Biafra, there will be nothing living in that very zoo they call Nigeria; nothing will survive there, I can assure you" Mr. Kanu added. 

He further alleged that the governors in Igboland are lackeys of 'Hausa-Fulani godfathers' appointed by them to do their bidding. He was particularly critical of Imo State governor Rochas Okorocha who he accused of singlehandedly islamizing the state. "Every Igbo governor you have has a Hausa-Fulani godfather", the broadcaster said. 

Mr. Kanu also slammed the idea of a peaceful approach to gaining a Biafran independence saying peace never works in the fight for liberation. "I do not believe in peaceful actualization or whatever rubbish it is called. I have never seen where you become free by peaceful means" he suggested. He said statistics available to him indicates that over 98% of Igbos support a Biafran secession because every Igbo has freedom embedded in their DNA. 

He complained that the structures for negotiating an independent Biafra does not exist thus leaving them no choice but to resort to the current approach they are embarking on. He therefore lent support for the attack on the Enugu State Government House recently, which was claimed by the Biafra Zionist Movement. "Anybody that can do anything to disrupt the present orthodoxy of governance by a group of very corrupt cabals is welcome" he said.  

Biafra was the name given to the secessionist state in the south-eastern part of Nigeria from May 1967 to January 1970, when natives of the region led by Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu opted to break away from the Nigerian federation. After two and a half years of a bitter war which claimed the lives of an estimated 1 million people however, Biafra was reintegrated into the Nigerian federation. The inhabitants of the region are loosely referred to as Igbos, Ibibio-Efiks, Ijaws, Ogojas etc. but anthropologists point to a complex inter-relationship of several other ethnicities all connected by common ancestry.

Pilgrimage To Igbo Landing St. Simon Island Georgia, USA.



Wriiten by Nnamdi Kanu

Every person born Igbo or of Biafran extraction must endeavour to visit this hallowed stretch of Creek Point in Savannah St. Simon Island Georgia USA at least once in their lifetime. I performed this pilgrimage to honour the foremost freedom fighters mankind has ever known. On this far away land in USA Biafrans became the first people on earth to sacrifice their life rather than be slave to white Europeans in America. Their defiance is a testament to who we are as a people and is the singular incident that shaped my consciousness as a 17 year old when I was acquainted with Alex Hailey's master class ROOTS. After reading this book I vowed to visit the spot where these heroes of freedom fighting met their death in stoic defence of the honour and dignity of mankind. I have honoured them as I vowed I would many years ago with prayers on the spot where they died. The sanctification ritual was also performed which enabled me to begin the process of returning their spirit back to Biafraland from whence they came. Their spirit is with us and what they started on the creeks of Georgia delta we must surely accomplish on the battlefield of Hausa/Fulani and Yoruba lands. This year we remember all of them, all those that died that we may live. 30 May 2014 is the date. That day the world will hear about us.

150 killed in Kaduna villages including pastor’s wife and three children. - March 14 Update.



The death toll following a massacre across three villages in central Nigeria a week ago has risen beyond 150, according to the deputy Chairman of the Kaura Local Government Area in Southern Kaduna.

Suspected Fulani herdsmen raided three mainly Christian villages Ugwar Sankwai, Ungwan Gata and Chenshyi (known also as Tekun) late last Friday night (14th March).

240 houses were set ablaze, alongside three churches, one ECWA (Evangelical Church Winning All) and two Anglican. The wife and three children of the pastor of the ECWA Church, Rev Likita Riku were killed, and burnt beyond recognition. 

The victims were buried in three different mass graves after inter-denominational prayers last Sunday. 

On Tuesday, March 18, our reporter visited the area: three days after the massacre, he saw that the survivors were still highly traumatized. The affected villages, comprised of mainly farmers and small scale traders, were deserted (an undermined number of food stores were also looted). Dozens of those affected were sleeping in a primary school, some of them were with relatives in nearby areas.

Meanwhile hundreds of relatives and sympathizers arrived to commiserate with survivors. The ECWA pastor was still in a state of total shock, unable to speak to other relatives and a number of church officials who came to try to support him. 

Surviving children, who were still crying, asked where their parents, brothers, sisters and friends were: many were hacked to death. 

Explaining how the killings occurred, a survivor, Emmanuel Tonak, said, “We were fast asleep when we heard gun shots and chanting of ‘Allahu akbar’ [God is great]. Suddenly we came out and saw them advancing and some houses in flames. They came around 11 pm. I escaped into the forest, when they came I started hearing cries and gun shots.”

Government National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) workers also came to provide some relief: notably food, mattresses, blankets and mosquito nets. 

NEMA has registered about 2,000 people displaced by the attack: its Zonal Coordinator Alhaji Musa Ilallah acknowledged that more may be needed, due to the scale of destruction. 

“Although the materials may not be sufficient, we urge the people to accept them and to try to embrace the spirit of forgiveness and love one another.” 

Attacks carried out by Fulani herdsmen in central Nigeria have reached an unprecedented level this year. (About 35 people were killed and a Catholic Church was attacked by Fulani armed men in several villages last Sunday afternoon 16th Feb in Taraba State, on Nigeria's eastern border). 


Some analysts point to the use of guerrilla warfare tactics, aimed at wiping out an entire community. Women and children were clearly attacked, and in some cases prominent families - such as community or religious leaders – were targeted. 

The Kaduna State Governor, Mukhtar Ramalan Yero, who was on his way to United States to address an audience on peace and security, cut short his trip to return to Nigeria. He vowed to bring the perpetrators to justice but he didn’t explain how.

“We pray that God should expose the people that are causing this problem. We pray that God should touch their hearts to stop such dastardly acts or destroy their evil machinations. We must not despair under these brazen attacks. As a leader, I am not happy with such ugly situations because it is my responsibility to ensure security and safety for the entire people of the State."

The Secretary of the Kaduna State Chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Rev. Sunday Ibrahim, has condemned the massacre. 

“The killing is barbaric and unjustifiable. We are mourning and condemn in strong terms these serial killings. As Christians we are not preaching violence, but urging the government and security agencies to rise up and face the reality of things. It is clear they have religious motives and the government must protect our people’s religious freedom to the letter.”

The national president of Southern Kaduna People’s Union (SOKAPU) Dr. Ephraim Goje has denounced a ‘jihad’ declared by Fulani on Christians in Southern Kaduna. 

The security forces were accused of being slow to intervene, leaving enough time for the assailants to withdraw. According to survivors, the attackers have vowed to come back. Despite heavy security reinforcements, the prospect of further violence seems high.

55 Killed by Fulani Herdsmen in Guma, Benue State.


It was a bloody afternoon of March 23 in Benue state as some youths of the Tiv tribe clashed with suspected Fulani mercenaries in the state, leaving 55 people dead. The communal clash which is reported to be about land matters happened at Gbajimba, the headquarters of Guma LGA of the state. The Fulanis complain that farmers do block the road that pass through to graze their cattle. They migrate southwards to find greener pastures while the farmers try to protect their farms from being destroyed.

Sources say suspected Fulani mercenaries had attempted to attack the Tiv community in the morning at about 10am but were resisted by the youths. They then made a return after a well coordinated attack plan had been hatched. They came in their hundreds, shooting indiscriminately and burning down houses. Continue...

"They came in their numbers very early in the morning from Awe, Nasarawa State and made an attempt to seize the town and the local government secretariat but they were confronted by our youths who resisted them, forcing them to beat a retreat. Later in the afternoon at about 1pm, they staged a more coordinated attack on the town, this time they came in their hundreds, shooting, burning down houses, huts and killing anything in sight. The Police station in Gbajimba was helpless because we have less than 50 officers and men on ground at the station and this attack has completely overwhelmed them". A witness said

Benue State Deputy Governor Steven Lawani while speaking at a thanksgiving service yesterday at the state capital, Makurdi, pledged that residents would reclaim their land being occupied by Fulani herdsmen. 

Saturday, 22 March 2014

Radio Biafra London commences Satellite Transmission in Nigeria.


SOURCE

A Biafran secessionist group, the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), claims that its radio transmission, Radio Biafra (RB), which has been transmitting to European and American audiences, has now gone satellite and is reaching people in their (Biafran) territory.

In an interview, its interim Spokesperson, Ikechukwu Enyiagu, declared: “It’s with warm gratitude to Chukwu Abiama (God), dancing hearts of joy and shouts of freedom from our mouths that Indigenous People of Biafra happily announce to the world that Radio Biafra, the voice for Indigenous People of Biafra, can now be received via satellite”

According to Enyiagu, the broadcast could be reached through AMOS 5 satellite @ 17E. Frequency: 12216V S/R: 27500 FEC-3/4.

He said the mission of IPOB was to compel Nigerian government to allow Biafran secede through a referendum. He insisted that IPOB was not a group but a coalition of indigenous people of Biafra, fully backed by the United Nations in its charter for the rights of indigenous peoples, and operating in truth and honesty.

Enyiagu took time to dissociate IPOB from Biafran Zionist Movement, which recently claimed responsibility for a recent attack on Enugu Government House, insisted that there were operating legitimately with truth and honesty.

Going further, the Biafran chief spokesman clarified that his group has no affiliation whatsoever with Ralph Uwazuruike, the leader of Movement for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB), or those loyal to him but said the group was ready to work with members of MASSOB who are ready to seek Biafra in truth and honesty and would not lie to Biafrans.
“We will not work with anyone – whether a freedom fighter or not – whose hands have been stained with Biafran blood.”

Those in MASSOB who have discovered the treachery of their leader and would not be part of it, if their hands are innocent of blood of Biafrans, are welcomed” he said.
Explaining further, he said Radio Biafra was originally launched and have been broadcasting from London in 2009, but went off air due to funding. It reopened in 2013 and since then has been on air via the internet and via Radio Biafra app to the world. “Radio Biafra decided to come home to Biafran soil, now that the time is right, and has capacity to reach audiences in Biafra territories and within Africa,” he said.

He warned that all those killing Biafrans outside Biafran territory would be dealt with when Biafra finally regains it nationhood.

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Turkish Airlines allegedly ships arms to Nigeria, tape reveals

Istanbul (AFP) - Turkish Airlines allegedly shipped weapons to unknown groups in Nigeria, which has been ravaged by violence between the army and Boko Haram militants, a new incriminating phone call revealed on Tuesday.

The leaked conversation is the latest blow to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has been hit by a corruption probe ensnaring his key allies and a widening phone-tapping scandal.

In a tape posted on YouTube, Mehmet Karatas, an assistant executive of the airline, allegedly tells Mustafa Varank, an advisor to Erdogan, that he feels guilty over national flag carrier's arms shipment to Nigeria.

"I do not know whether these (weapons) will kill Muslims or Christians. I feel sinful," Karatas is allegedly heard saying.

The leaked call has the potential to harm the airline's image -- which is 49 percent state-owned and is in an aggressive push to become a global player.

It is the latest in a series of recordings implicating Erdogan and his aides in corruption and other abuses of power ahead of crucial local polls on March 30.

The Turkish strongman has dismissed most of the tapes as "vile" fakes put together by rivals.

Comment:  Africa continues to be an experimental ground full of specimen for the west.

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Biafra , Nigeria --- The current state...

Written by Cebiloan Hyacint on the article: (Oil was a major issue in the Nigerian civil war forty years ago.) --- Comments by Restore Biafra.

Nigeria is a country that was created artificially by British colonialism. It has a complex ethnic mixture of groups, with a division between the North, inhabited by Muslim Fulani-Hausas with a rigid feudal system, and the South where a number of different ethnic groups co-existed loosely, the largest of these groups being the Christian Igbos and Yorubas. The trick of British colonialism was the divide and rule system. They knew the nature of Nigeria; that it is a country that doesn’t have the same climate, not the same religion, not the same mentality, not the same food, not the same dress, not the same dialect, and not the same culture. They used their military might to force Nigeria to be one by the amalgamation of the southern and northern protectorates of Nigeria (Jan. 1914). They gave the Fulani emirs political prominence at the expense of the Southern population and left a time bomb with the fuse burning.

Prior to independence, and afterwards, many threats of a Northern secession were made by the Northern politicians because they did not want to be part of Nigeria. But in realty these Northern political kangaroos called leaders did not want to lose the benefit of Southern oil and industries. Nigeria was supposed to get its independence before the Gold Coast (now Ghana) did in 1957 but, because Northerners were not prepared to be part of the new country, Nigeria lost many years in debate and compromise until the North agreed to be part of it. It was only in 1960 that independence came.

But the new Nigerian constitutional framework did not resolve everything, it being clear that Nigeria was sitting on a time bomb that would explode and cause real dangerous harm to all Nigerians.

The constitution did not change the relative cultural backwardness of the North compared to the South. What the Northern leaders wanted was a guarantee that they would retain their dominant political position after independence. If not, they would pull out and form an “Arewa Republic” for the interest of the Fulani-Hausa. British imperialists thought that the North were fools to be used, and stole the resources from the South. But, the North got their way in political domination in Nigeria.

Military rule

In 1966, a group of young officers assassinated the Northern leader Bello, the federal Prime Minister Tafawa Balewa and the Western leader Akintola who had become discredited in the eyes of the population. The coup leader, Major Kaduna Chukwuma Nzeogwu (now dead) broadcast the following reasons for the coup on radio:

“Our enemies are the political profiteers, swindlers, men in high and low places that seek bribes and demand ten percent, those that seek to keep the country permanently divided so that they can remain in office as Ministers and VIP’s of waste, the tribalists, the nepotists, those that make the country look big for nothing before international circles”.

In the North, jubilant masses ransacked the governor’s palace and cheered the coup leader, despite his Igbo origin.

The coup did not succeed. In Lagos, General Thomas Umunnakwe Aguiyi Ironsi had restored peace and order in the name of the old government with British backing. He placed himself as the first army general at the head of the federation and declared Nigeria under military rule.

Despite opposition from Northern politicians, General Ironsi announced his “Unification Decree” which although it changed little but names – regions became provinces, the federation became a Republic – caused a series of the most violent massacres of Southerners (the Igbos) yet seen in the North. “Armed thugs moved across the space between the city walls of Kano and the Sabon Garis where the Easterners (the Igbos) lived, broke into the ghetto and started burning, raping, looting and killing as many men, women and children from the East as the could lay their hands on”. It is without doubt that these massacres were deliberately planned by Northern politicians using their own armed gangs to whip up local feelings against the Igbos and other Southerners.

General Ironsi then went on a tour to Ibadan, Western region, to promote the “ One Nigeria” idea. While he was on this tour another coup was staged, by Northern army officers. General Ironsi and two of his commanding officers were stripped, beaten, tortured and then shot. With taking over command, the coup leader, led by a young British trained officer, General Gowon, issued instructions for Igbos in the army –many of them formed the majority of the technical corps – to be rounded up and imprisoned. And Gowon declared himself the supreme commander of the Nigerian armed forces. During September and October 1966, three months after Gowon’s takeover a large scale massacre of Southerners (the Igbos) was reported again from the Northern region.

The British High Commission in Lagos after meeting with the coup leaders came out in their full support –including their demand for recognition of the dominance of the North in any political process. All the regions except the South Eastern region – where the former governor, colonel Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu, remained in command with his troops and refused to recognize the new dictatorship. (This) Ojukwu; son of a millionaire who had been knighted by the British, had been educated in Oxford Universty and Sandhurst college, saw the atrocities of Gowon and decided to lead the South-East to secession and war (secession not war).

Gowon thought that British imperialist liked him and that was why they would support him to fight a war against Ojukwu. But he failed to understand that Britain and America were only interested in stealing Nigerian oil (say Biafra oil).

The Biafra War

(The Biafra war? No, the correct subtitle should read The Biafra Genocide. America invaded Iraq, was that America-Iraq war? The same way, Nigeria invaded Biafra)
On 30 May 1967, Colonel Ojukwu proclaimed the independent Republic of Biafra. Biafra fought a war against Britain, (USSR, Egyptian pilot), the United States of America, the Nigerian federal army and the River State militia. The actual fighting lasted for 24 months and took the form of an initial conquest of towns and a whole region to the west of Biafra by the Biafran Army and then the slow re-conquest of this region and Biafra itself, town by town, with the Nigerian Federal Army with its imperialist backers pushing the Biafran troops further back.

What the Nigeria and Biafra civil war did achieve was hatred, tribalism, nepotism, marginalization, ethnic inquisition, killings of 2 million innocent Nigerians (more than 3.5 million Biafrans) who did not know anything about politics nor the oil in their region by Gowon and his capitalists backers, i.e. Britain and US. It also resulted in the reinforcement of the Gowon regime as the military dictatorship was to remain in power for a further six years before being kicked out of power by another brutal military dictator Major General Murtala Mohammed in 1976.

Rivalries for Oil

The BBC journalist Frederick Forsyth, who reported from Biafra during the war, later highlighted a major factor precipitating the war:

“It has been postulated that if the Biafrans had had their way as a republic of semi-desert and was allowed to separate from Nigeria, there would have cries of ‘Good Riddance’ in their ears. One foreign businessman said that ‘it’s an oil war’ and felt obliged to say no more.”

Biafra was not a semi-desert, beneath it lies an ocean of oil. Approximately one tenth of this field lies in neighbouring Cameroon, three tenths in Nigeria. The remaining six tenths lies under Biafra.

Gowon and his ruling bandits and Ojukwu’s Eastern interest group had attempted to make an agreement over the terms of their relationship with the British and US oil companies in New York in June 1967. Ojukwu claimed the right to the royalties paid in Lagos by Shell/BP. Up until June 1967, £7 million due to Nigeria in oil royalties had not yet been paid. It was discussed that Biafra should receive 57.7 percent of the royalties and the rest be put aside until there was a political settlement. Gowon vehemently refused to pay and threatened to extend the anti-Biafra blockade to the Bonny Island oil terminal. Without respecting the agreement, Gowon’s troops launched their attack and captured the terminal at Port Bonny.

As soon as the Nigerian army took the oil terminal, the British and US oil companies arrived behind them building new oil installations as fast as they could while war was still raging a few kilometres away.

The Gowon regime represented by proxy the interests of Britain, the US and Muslim countries including Egypt whose pilots flew the Ilyushin jets provided by the USSR. The important imperialist interests at work were those of the oil companies owned by the British, Americans and French and backed by their respective governments in the way they lined up for and against Biafra.

Shell/BP was the biggest exploiter of Nigerian oil. This Anglo-Dutch consortium held the major concessions for oil in both the Biafran and Niger delta region where oil had more recently begun to be pumped. When Biafra was blockaded all oil ceased to flow – because the oil from outside of Biafra, from the Niger Delta’ was conveyed to Port Harcourt, now in Biafra, via a large pipeline. The US companies were also exploiting Nigerian oil but their interests were mainly in the Niger Delta region.

As to France, since all oil concessions in the Biafran region were not yet taken by super imperialists, they had been planning to expand their own concession already operating in Biafra in the name of the state-owned company ELF. Because of that they were in direct rivalry with Shell/BP and hope to gain something at their expense.

The President of France, General Charles De Gaulle kept his options open. Though he never formally recognized Biafra, he did support Biafra’s “right to self-determination” and gave aid through France’s colonized states like Ivory Coast, Cameroon and Gabon. Biafra also got support from South Africa, and Israel.

In 1970, after the genocide, a series of peace talks were held and a settlement was reached and Gowon made his famous speech that there were no victors, no vanquished in this war. Of course, this was true. Both sides had suffered severe losses and part of the country had been devastated. But there was one victor not only in Biafraland but, also in the whole world. Imperialism had established a number of new oil terminals and ensured the stability of its oil profits thanks to Gowon.

The “unity” of Nigeria in reality disappeared because of the mistrust built up during the war and the atrocities perpetrated against Biafrans by Gowon and his imperialist backers.

Every war fought in the world is at the advantage of capitalism. The Nigerian-Biafran war, Rwandan genocide, Liberia war, Sierra Leone war, Democratic Republic of Congo war, Ivory Coast war, Uganda war, Eritrea-Ethiopia war, Darfur conflict, Angola war, Iraqi war, Palestinian-Israeli war, Afghanistan war, India-Pakistan war, Somali war, Zimbabwe conflict, Senegal-Cassamace war, Guinea Bissau war, Chechnya-Russia war. All wars to the advantage of capitalism. Beware and be warned.

Do not say that you did not know or hear about socialism and what we do. The choice is yours. Enough is enough - we must work together and join hands and cast capitalism and imperialism to burn in the abyss of everlasting fire.

Saturday, 15 March 2014

350 killed in Boko Haram, Army clash.


No fewer than 350 people lost their lives on Friday as the orgy of bloodletting in some parts of the country continued with the clash  between  Boko Haram insurgents  and the Special Forces in  Maimalari, Maiduguri, Borno State. The insurgents had attacked the 21 Armoured Brigade of the Nigerian Army in the wee hours of Friday.
Saturday PUNCH learnt that the dead included insurgents who attacked the military formation and their members who were held at the biggest detention facility on the premises of the headquarters of the Brigade.
It was gathered that the insurgents targeted the detention facility within the 21 Armoury Brigade where most of the hardened members of the sect were detained.
The military authorities were said to have received an intelligence report of an impending attack on the barracks and prepared for the insurgents.
It was learnt that the insurgents attempted to divert the attention of the military by carrying out the attack in military uniforms and vehicles painted in military colours.
The huge casualty figure was revealed amid fresh facts on why the insurgents were able to advance near the detention camp with ease. It was learnt that the insurgents’ advancement could not be immediately halted because  the Shilka tank, a multipurpose self-propelled anti-aircraft artillery weapon positioned to secure the barracks, failed to fire.
An authoritative security source who pleaded anonymity because he was not authorised to speak on behalf of the Special Forces, told Saturday PUNCH  that the Shilka tank refused to respond to signal.  This situation, he said, prompted the Special Forces to fight hard to prevent what would have been a tragic outing.
It was learnt that the tank had earlier been well -positioned to secure the portion  of the barracks where the insurgents had penetrated. The source said if the gun had responded to touch, the soldiers would have found it easier to repel the attack of the insurgents without any damage.
It was learnt that the soldiers abandoned the disappointing artillery tank and relied on other weapons to ward off the insurgents’ attack.
The source said that the military was already looking into the reason behind the disappointment of the crucial weapon.
It was learnt that security operatives who were investigating the Shilka tank failure were considering two possibilities-the age of the old artillery weapon and the possibility of sabotage .
“You know that when these people came, the Shilka gun simply did not fire. It disappointed, so the soldiers had to rely on other weapons to defend the barracks.
“The gun was positioned to defend that part of the barracks where the insurgents came from. If that gun had fired, they wouldn’t have got into the barracks near the detention facility.’’
Saturday PUNCH  learnt  that the insurgents stormed the strategic army formation from a place called Pori, near a tomato farm close to the barracks, with some Armoured Personnel Carriers, as early as 6.30am.
 A security source, who spoke to our correspondent on the condition of anonymity, said that the insurgents fought their way into the detention facility at the barracks where they attempted to free some of their members being held.
The source said that at the end of the confrontation, the soldiers recovered a Buffalo Truck and an Armoured Personnel Carrier from the insurgents.
Although the soldiers prevented the barracks from being burnt by the invading Boko Haram fighters, it was said that the insurgents burnt the MRS, (the traditional medical facility within the barracks) and the detention facility.
A security source, who spoke to one of our correspondents on the condition of anonymity, said that 53 of the insurgents were killed in action at the barracks while 297 were killed in a joint operation by the Air Force and the ground forces engrossed in chasing the fleeing insurgents.
The source further said that four children of a soldier were among those killed.
The leader of a volunteer youth vigilante group who assisted the military in repelling the attack, Abdullahi Dere, said not less than 207 suspected Boko Haram terrorists  were killed.
Dere, who is the chairman of Sector 5 of  the local vigilante group, popularly  referred to as “Civilian JTF”  in Jidari Polo near the Giwa Barracks, said several insurgents fled the town for their hideouts with injuries.
He said: “We counted 207 dead bodies of Boko Haram members shot dead by the military in Jidari Polo area alone. The suspected Boko Haram members had attacked Giwa Barracks  and freed some of the detainees but the military were able to go after them and killed them. As we speak, the dead bodies of the terrorists are still within our area unattended to.”
He added: “We were also able to capture some fleeing Boko Haram suspects and handed them over to the military.”
Confirming the casualties figure given by Dere, the Vice- Chairman of the vigilante -group in the area, Tijjani Bello, said apart from 207 killed close to the barracks, many more were  killed in different parts of the city.
He said, “Many  Boko Haram members were also killed apart from the ones killed in Jidari Polo. But we only fear that some innocent residents may be among those killed.”
Another eyewitness told one of our correspondents that he counted 60 bodies that were dumped in a heap at the headquarters of the Brigade. It was learnt that the ground forces and the men of the Air Force were still in hot pursuit of the fleeing insurgents as of the time of filing this report.
The source said that the military operation was designed to ensure that the fleeing insurgents were prevented from getting out of Maiduguri into their safe havens in the vast Sambisa forests.
It was further gathered that a good number of the insurgents were killed en masse in a plantation not too far from the Brigade on Friday afternoon.
The source said that the insurgents were attempting to hide and to regroup in the plantation when they were stormed by security forces, which spotted them from a hilly location. “Several of them were also killed this afternoon in a plantation where they wanted to take cover; they were hiding there without knowing that security forces were watching them. All of them who were found in that location were killed and their arms and ammunition recovered.
A source said that about 60 bodies of dead insurgents were dumped at the gate of the Brigade barracks in Maimalari by 5.30 pm  on Friday.
It was further learnt that the insurgents inflicted some gunshot wounds on some soldiers and barracks boys during the attacks. The injured were said to have been taken to a hospital as of the time of filing this report.
Saturday PUNCH further learnt that 10 Air Force fighter jets were deployed to provide the requisite air support for ground forces who engaged the insurgents for close to three hours.
Investigation revealed that a third year student of Mass Communication was hit by a stray bullet at the University of Maiduguri.
The Director of Defence Information, Maj. Gen. Chris Olukolade, said in an electronic mail on Friday that the attack was an attempt by the insurgents to free their detained members in order to boost the number of their depleted fighters.
Olukolade said that the Special Forces foiled the attack with heavy casualties on the side of the insurgents.
He said that the victims of the terrorist attacks included some of the detained terror suspects. He said that the Special Forces also captured many of the terrorists and their arms and ammunition.
He added that four soldiers who sustained gunshot wounds were being treated.
He said, “Pockets of terrorists apparently in a move to boost their depleted stock of fighters this morning attacked a military location in Maiduguri with a view to freeing their colleagues who are being held in detention.
“The attack has been successfully repelled with heavy human casualties on the terrorists.  Some of the victims of the terrorists fired  in their efforts to break into the detention facility included those they came to rescue.
 “Many of the terrorists and their weapons have been captured.  Four soldiers were wounded and are being treated.
“Hot pursuits by land and air operations are ongoing along with cordon and search of surrounding localities.
“No institution has been reportedly attacked, although the effect of firing from the encounter could be noticed in surrounding facilities in Maiduguri.”
He said that the attack was a reaction to the intensity of military attacks on terrorist ‘strongholds at Talala, Monguzum, Sambisa forests, Gwoza, Mandara mountains as well as the general area of Lake Chad which were destroyed and where many of the insurgents were killed.
Meanwhile, the Senate President, David Mark, on Friday lamented fresh attacks of Boko Haram insurgents on Maiduguri, and pleaded with the insurgents to end the hostilities.
Mark, who spoke against the fresh onslaught of the insurgents on Maiduguri on Friday, reminded them that violence or crime anywhere in the World could not produce  good result.
The senate president in  a statement in Abuja by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Paul Mumeh,  said “no matter the amount of anger in a man’s mind, resorting to violence or killing another cannot be a solution.”
He said, “There are many channels of communication to dialogue. We can still come to a dialogue table and resolve our differences.
“The spate of attacks and killings across  Nigeria is becoming intolerable and indeed unbearable. The situation is degenerating. We cannot pretend not to know that the nation is endangered. We must all speak out with one voice against this growing terrorism.
“For whatever reason, let wise counsel prevail. We are not at war with each other. Nigerians and indeed Africans are known to be their brothers’ keepers.
“This  time-tested position should not be compromised. Let’s respect human life. It is not too late to reverse this ugly situation especially in Borno, Yobe, Adamawa, Katsina and Benue states.”
He, however, implored the security operatives across the country to remain vigilant and be determined to protect lives and property even as he urged citizens to cooperate with them.
Meanwhile, the Senate President has sent a message of condolence to the Igbo apex socio- cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, on the demise of its former President, Ambassador Ralph Uweche.
Mark described Uweche as an ambassador par excellence and a bridge builder who worked for the peace and unity of Nigeria. He said Uweche left a positive footprint on the sand of time.
He said, “We shall miss his frank and honest disposition especially on national issues.  He was a great patriot who believed in the unity and indivisibility of Nigeria.”

Friday, 14 March 2014

We attacked Enugu government house - Biafran Zionist Federation (BZF).

THE attack on Enugu Government House last Saturday has taken a new dimension as another secessionist group, the Biafran Zionist Federation (BZF), on Wednesday, claimed responsibility for the invasion, giving the Nigerian state a deadline of March 31 to quit Enugu and other Biafran territories or face bloody attacks.

The group told selected journalists in Enugu that it captured the Government House for four hours before retreating, adding that it was not overpowered..

Leader of the group, Benjamin Onwuka, who announced the deadline, said he personally led the operation to the Government House to recapture it for Biafra, with a view to keeping hope alive for the republic.

Onwuka explained that they chose to invade Enugu Government House because it was the centre of power for Biafra.

He said they did not attack Government House, but only recaptured it and hoisted the Biafran flag, which had never rested in the place since January 12, 1970 when the Nigeria/Biafra civil war ended, until last Saturday.

Onwuka, a United Kingdom trained lawyer, said BZF men captured the Government House for four hours and they were engaged in a battle by the Nigerian forces, which forced them to retreat to avoid loss of lives.
"What we did on March 8 was to reconfirm the independence of the Republic of Biafra, which we successfully did. We did not attack the Government House. Rather, we captured it back for the Biafran people. We captured it for four hours and then there was a battle between Biafrans and Nigerians. By 7.a.m., we retreated because we didn't have any weapons in our hands. We were avoiding loss of lives.
"The reason we did it was to show the Biafran people that the hope of Biafra is still alive. Nothing can quench the aspiration of the Biafran people to be independent. And that independence has been resurrected. The Biafran flag was hoisted at Government House on March 8, 2014 and I, Benjamin Igwe Onwuka, led the operation. It wasn't an armed attack on the Government House. It wasn't kidnappers as the police have said. It was the Biafran people," he said.
Contrary to claims by the police that the invaders came with machetes and cutlasses, Onwuka said they retreated after holding sway for four hours because they were not armed.
He explained that the hoisting of the Biafran flag at the Government House was the symbol of the resurrection of Biafra.
Onwuka said his group wished to let the Biafran people and the entire world know that Biafra had been resurrected and no force of arm would hinder the aspiration for its independence.
"By March 31, Nigeria must vacate Biafra. Failure to do so, there is going to be bloodbath because this time round, we are going to be armed and prepared. What is happening in Ukraine, Crimea and Syria is going to be a child's play if they fail to leave Biafra by March 31, 2014.

"The Biafran people have had enough. The killings of our people on a daily basis, both in the North and here on Biafran soil is no longer acceptable to us. Our people are being killed on a daily basis. It is a promise to Biafran people that the killing must stop and it will stop. Biafra has risen. I am calling our people to support the quest for Biafra independence. The territories include: Benue, Kogi, Delta, Edo, Bayelsa, Rivers, Cross River, Akwa Ibom, Ebonyi, Anambra, Enugu, Imo, Abia and Southern Ondo" Onwuka said.
He described what happened on March 8 as victory for the Biafran people, assuring that Israel and other world powers would come to the aid of Biafra.

He pointed out that the scenario now would be quite different from what happened in 1967, adding that Biafrans are going to fight their cause, on both military and diplomatic angles.

SOURCE 1

38-year-old caught with 18 human skulls in Ogun State.

ABEOKUTA — The Ogun State Police Command, yesterday, said it had nabbed a 38-year-old man, Adelani Ayomide, with a bag containing 18 human skulls.

The state Police Public Relations Officer, Muyiwa Adejobi, in a statement, said the suspected ritualist was arrested at 6:48am, yesterday, on Ado-Odo, Owode Road by policemen attached to a division in Ado-Odo-Ota Local Government Area of the state.

Adejobi said: “Policemen attached to Ado-Odo Division, while on a stop-and-search exercise along Ado-Odo Owode Road sighted a pedestrian, Adelani Ayomide, 38, of Ilaro, Ogun State with a bag containing 18 human heads.

“The suspect will be transferred to the state department of investigation, Eleweran Abeokuta, for discrete investigation.

“The Commissioner of Police, Ikemefuna Okoye has assured of a thorough investigation and that he will make sure the suspect faces the full wrath of the law and assist in getting other suspects in connection with the crime.”

Meantime, four Policemen have been honoured by Police Community Relations Committee, PCRC, in the state.

Those honoured yesterday, include Muyiwa Adejobi; Officer in charge of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad in the state, Ahmed Tijani, and two Police Officers at Agbara and Ogijo, Ayodele Sonubi and Toyin Afolabi, respectively.

Speaking at the event, which was held at Police Officer’s mess, GRA, Oke-Ilewo, Abeokuta, the state Chairman of PCRC, Chief Moshood Sule, commended the command and its officers’ performance in the state.

Thursday, 13 March 2014

103 feared killed as gunmen invade Katsina communities.


Scores of gunmen, believed to be cattle rustlers, have attacked villages in Katsina State killing about 103 people, residents have told PREMIUM TIMES.

Residents said about 100 armed men on motorcycles on Tuesday and Wednesdayevening invaded Kurar Mota, Marabar Maigora, Sabon Layin Galadima, Unguwar Doka, and Maigora, all in Faskari Local Government Area of Katsina State.

A witness who narrowly escaped and later returned to his village told PREMIUM TIMES on Thursday morning that he attended the burial of 27 people in his hometown, Maigora. He said he later attended the burial of another 21 people at Sabon Layin Galadima; while 40 people were killed at Marabar Maigora; 7 in Kurar Mota and 8 in Unguwar Doka.

Many of the victims, among them women and children, are believed to have been set ablaze inside their houses. The witness, who did not wasn’t to be named for security reasons, said they believed the attackers were cattle rustlers on a reprisal mission as many of them had been arrested and handed over to the police in recent times.

Efforts to speak to the spokesperson of the Katsina police, Aminu Abubakar, on the current situation in the area and the official casualty figure have been unsuccessful as his telephone number is not reachable; although the BBC Hausa Service quotes a federal lawmaker from the area, Abbas Machika, as saying 67 people were killed in the attack.

Tuesday, 11 March 2014

PROTEST LETTER OF DR. FRANCIS AKANU IBIAM TO HER MAJESTY QUEEN ELIZABETH II.

...and the same Queen wants to accept an award from Goodluck Jonathan for the good work of killing Christians!

PROTEST LETTER OF

DR. FRANCIS AKANU IBIAM

TO HER MAJESTY QUEEN ELIZABETH II

I am deeply and humbly constrained to present you with this letter. For many years, indeed throughout my mature life, I had been a proud but disinterested admirer of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and her peoples. The history of Your Majesty’s country is replete with heroism, discoveries which were near miracles, and institutions of higher learning of the most outstanding character and achievement. Britain, though insular and small in size and capacity, had centuries ago proved conclusively, to the world that for any community and nation to reach the acme of greatness and respectability, it is not quantity that counts but quality and the type of people who make up the nation.

British Christians had the privilege and honour of evangelizing not only a good part of Africa, my own continent, but also a greater part of the rest of the world. Her missionaries, men and women, left home and kindred and comfortable life, to spread Christianity far and wide in areas of the world where, for want of a better description, life was anything but civilized in the Western sense of the word, civilization. They endured lack of scientifically purified water, electric or gas light. They trekked long miles of single-file roads, endured our moist heat and drenching rains, the nuisance of mosquitoes, and sand flies and other indigenous African insects. In the earlier days of missionary venture, they imported tons of tinned foodstuffs and cared nothing for their lives so long as they could preach the Gospel and its Good News, heal the sick, and bring education and enlightenment to the people. The result of this effective humanitarian service, supported financially, morally, and prayerfully by the Churches way back in their homeland, has born exceedingly abundant fruit, and for us in Biafra (formerly Eastern Nigeria), their work has, by grace of God, made our homeland as much a Christian country as any other reputed countries of the world.

Despite annoying treatment meted to me and my fellow African students now and again in certain quarters, I was highly impressed with the religious life of the people of Britain, particularly in Scotland, where I lived and studied in the University of St. Andrews for seven years in one of the coldest parts of the United Kingdom. Altogether, I resided in Britain for ten long years. And having seen their homeland and lived in this Christian atmosphere in which they grew up, the self-denial and self-sacrifice of Christian Missionary came home to me very forcibly, I drew much inspiration from their splendid example, and my understanding and realization of the full meaning and significance of the Christian life dawned on me with great sense of joy and thankfulness.

After taking my medical degrees, therefore, I offered my services to the Foreign Mission Committee (now the Overseas Council) of the Church of Scotland, Edinburgh. I joined the Church of Scotland Medical Service, Calabar Mission, Nigeria, and served the mission and its offspring, the Presbyterian Church of Nigeria, from February 1, 1936 to January 31, 1967. With the consent and approval of the Overseas Council, I was on leave of absence without pay during the last five years, December 1960, to January 1965, of my missionary service, while I was Governor of Eastern Nigeria. As the only Nigerian among a group of some seventy European Missionaries for twenty five years, the going was in the main, stiff and at various times, I felt most frustrated and unhappy. For although Missionaries inspired me without knowing it themselves, I regret to say that, by and large, they did not encourage me. Such a situation did not bother me, however, because I was inwardly happy to serve my people in this unique capacity, and I was not going to quit, come weal, come woe, until, like other missionaries, I had served my turn for thirty years or reached the age of sixty years. If European missionaries, I argued within me, could leave their well-ordered homeland and ease of life, more or less, and where they could make a name for themselves academically or otherwise, and came to my homeland where amenities of life in the European background were hardly existent, I did not see any reason why I, an African, could not follow in their footsteps and serve my own people in my own country under conditions which called for naked hardship and demanded much self denial and self sacrifice.

In 1949 New Year Honours Awards, Your Majesty’s revered and late father, His Majesty King George the sixth, graciously conferred on me the honour to be an Officer of the Civil Division of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (O.B.E) for services to the Church and State. Again, in the New Year Honours, 1951, he conferred on me the dignity to be a Knight Commander of the Civil Division of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (K.B.E) for selfless service to the Church and my country. I happened to be in London at this time as a special guest of the British Council, and when I was invited by a Buckingham Palace Official to present myself before His Majesty to receive the insignia and accolate of Knighthood, I begged permission to have them conferred on me on my return home to Nigeria. I did receive the insignia and certificate at the hands of His Excellency the then Governor of Nigeria, Sir John Macpherson, but I had the unique distinction and singular privilege of receiving the accolade from Your Majesty’s august person during your Majesty’s Royal and memorable visit to Nigeria in February, 1956. On the attainment and independence of Nigeria and sovereignty by Nigeria on October 1, 1960, Your Majesty was graciously pleased to appoint me as Governor of Eastern Nigeria within the Federal Republic of Nigeria on the recommendation of the Honourable Premier of Eastern Nigeria with the assent of his Excellency the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. In August 1962, Your Majesty conferred on me the dignity of being a Knight Commander of the Civil Division of the Most Distinguished Order of St. Michael and St. George (K.C.M.G.).

For these great honours and special recognitions, I am humbly grateful to Your Majesty and Your Majesty's Britannic Government. They are a happy reflection of the importance of Africa and her people before God and man. Howbeit, I must renounce all of them at this time. I do so to register the strongest protest at my command against Your Majesty's Government of United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland for supplying military equipment and arms to Nigeria which has waged a senseless and futile war of aggression against my country, the Republic of Biafra. My objection and protest are directed solely and entirely to the British Government because I believe that the staunch British friends of Africa, particularly the CHURCH, and informed British public opinion will deplore this unkindly act of the British Government to the Republic of Biafra. With the highest sense of responsibility, therefore, and bearing clearly in my own mind the moral issues which are at stake, and my own stand thereat, I return the insignia and paraphernalia of my title to Your Majesty’s Britannic Government through the British Deputy High Commissioner who is resident here in Enugu - the capital city of the Republic of Biafra.

During the months of May, July, August, and September, 1966, Northern Nigerian soldiers and civilians planned and committed the most atrocious crimes against Eastern Nigerians—now citizens of the Republic of Biafra. Sadistically, brutally and in cold blood, they murdered and slaughtered thousands of my brothers and sisters who were then living in Northern Nigeria and other parts of the former and defunct Federal Republic of Nigeria. They killed innocent children, helpless women, and defenseless men without any reason or rhyme. They entered churches and...
[4:01:18 AM] Andy Peter Andy: During the months of May, July, August, and September, 1966, Northern Nigerian soldiers and civilians planned and committed the most atrocious crimes against Eastern Nigerians—now citizens of the Republic of Biafra. Sadistically, brutally and in cold blood, they murdered and slaughtered thousands of my brothers and sisters who were then living in Northern Nigeria and other parts of the former and defunct Federal Republic of Nigeria. They killed innocent children, helpless women, and defenseless men without any reason or rhyme. They entered churches and hospitals and slaughtered them in cold blood. And most unbelievably yet only too true, they massacred women in actual LABOUR and their unborn children. They plundered, looted, assaulted and raped women and burnt down the homes of Easterners and left them penniless.

The most painful and unsoldierly act of all was that these Northern Nigerian soldiers killed their superior officers, including and especially His Excellency the Military Governor of Western Nigeria, Lt. Col. Francis Adekunle Fajuyi, and his guest and comrade, His Excellency, the Head of Supreme Military Council and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces of the former Federal Republic of Nigeria, Major-General J.T.U. Aguiyi-Ironsi, both of them of blessed memory. On July 29, 1966, they were kidnapped by Northern Nigerian soldiers and ruthlessly killed after torturing them. It must be stated here that the late Major-General J.T.U. Aguiyi-Ironsi, an Eastern Nigerian at that time, went all out to build up ONE UNITED AND STRONG NIGERIA through a unitary Government Administration, but paradoxically and ironically, he met a cruel and untimely death for that very reason. It is very strange, therefore, that Nigeria should be futilely waging a war of aggression against Biafra in her impossible bid to force Biafra back into this very same union—One Nigeria from which she had been so purposely and systematically forced out. Be that as it may, all kith and kin fled Northern Nigeria, Western Nigeria, and Lagos and returned to their homeland of Eastern Nigeria, the only place they knew they could have protection. In the process, Eastern Nigeria was left to look after and cater for at least two million refugees, and she has done and is doing so with commendable achievement. Eastern Nigeria did not retaliate in any way, for we do not kill strangers within our gates, and being humble and sensitive Christians, we refused to commit murder, contrary to the commandment of God, particularly as we believe that two wrongs can never make a right. Northern Nigerians in Eastern Nigeria were therefore collected together and escorted safely by train across the border to their own section of Nigeria.

In the succeeding months, the Hausa/Fulani controlled Lagos Government of Nigeria purposely, directly, and inexorably forced Eastern Nigeria out of the Federation, and our Military Governor with advice and consent of out Consultative Assembly had no other choice but to declare Eastern Nigeria a free, independent and sovereign state to be known as the Republic of Biafra. This happy and historical occasion took place on May 30. On July 6th, Nigeria attacked Biafra in her mad wish to force Biafra to return to the Nigeria federation. Having killed 30,000 of us in their land and seized our property worth millions of pound sterling, they have now come to kill more of us in our own homes and make the rest of us slaves to the Hausa/Fulani Feudalists and Moslems.

The people of Biafra are, therefore, fighting a war of LIBERATION AND SURVIVAL. We adamantly refuse to be colonized by the Hausa/Fulanis of Northern Nigeria or any other people in the world. Moreover it is an ardent desire of the Hausa/Fulani and Moslem Northern Nigeria to subjugate Biafra and kill Christianity in our country.

Your Majesty, the British officials in Nigeria are fully aware of all these. They know that we are injured and deeply grieved people and had been cruelly treated by our erstwhile fellow citizens of Federal Republic of Nigeria. The British officials not only knew the crux of the matter, but they also encouraged Northern Nigeria to carry out and execute their nefarious plan against us. They are angry with Biafra because Biafra categorically refused to remain as part of the Nigeria federation and political unit only to be trampled upon, discriminated against and hated, ruthlessly exploited and denied her rights and privileges, and slaughtered whenever it suited the whims and caprices of the favoured people of Northern Nigeria. To add insult to injury, Your Majesty’s Britannic Government, instead of being neutral in our quarrels or finding ways and means to mediate and bring peace to the two countries, has now taken it upon herself to supply military aid to Nigeria to help them defeat and subjugate Biafra.

It is simply staggering for a Christian country like Britain to help a Moslem country militarily to crush another Christian country like Biafra. This is just too much for me, Your Gracious Majesty, this act of unfriendliness and treachery by the British Government towards the people of Republic of Biafra who, as Eastern Nigerians, had so much regard for Britain and British people.
In the circumstance, Your Majesty, I no longer wish to wear the garb of the British Knighthood. British fairplay, British justice, and the Englishman’s word of honour which Biafra loved so much and cherished have become meaningless to Biafrans in general and to me in particular. Christian Britain has shamelessly let down Christian Biafra.

I love the Republic of Biafra very dearly and pray that, by grace of God, she may remain and continue to grow and live and always act like a truly Christian country for all times.

I am, Your Majesty

Yours Most Respectfully,

(AKANU IBIAM)
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