The push for secession is springing up everywhere in Nigeria. And indeed everywhere it’s a confrontation between bare hands secessionists against trigger-happy soldiers.
Thousands of lives have been wasted already, but the breakup still persist and the secessionists care less about the loss of their men, yet push further.
The struggle for “self-determination” or breakup of Nigeria as it’s going is gathering momentum, the valve is still sipping air into the fragile balloon and if this is not restrained Nigeria may not remain a united country someday.
Nigeria North and South’s union which was consummated over a hundred years ago has the South always complaining of the North cheating on the South since they came together in 1914 to form a country called Nigeria.
The South outcry which started like grumbling, later turned to discussions, converted to several meetings and Confabs where the South always walked away from all entreaties, wants everyone go her different ways due to the unbearable pains inflicted on her by the dilapidation of Southern Commonwealth by Northerns who make the situation even more injurious with the insecurity of the country which is the creation of the North.
Would the North let the South go her way?
How serious are various Southern secessionists on their quest to get their respective dreamed nations carved out from Nigeria?
The South is the main feeder Station for the entire Northern Nigeria. The former is a medical oxygen keeping the latter alive for very many decades down in history. Hence, the possibility for the North to survive and get better is almost impossible if the South disconnects her from the life-support she is giving the North for many years now. Thus the North may never let the South go.
While the North is that spouse who does not want the divorce pronounced and enforced, the complainant South has divergent interests in the divorce suit.
The South-East wants a different country called Briafra. The quest for Biafra is almost as old as the Independence of Nigeria, yet its promoters had refused to back out. Would they get it someday? You will found the answer as you read on.
Recently South Westerners and the indigenous people of the six Yoruba States have started denouncing Nigeria and want their six States to be known as Oduduwa Republic, another country carved out from Nigeria.
In the South-South, it’s a different stroke all together. While a section of the Ijaws are advocating for Ijaw Republic, another faction want to engulf the whole region into a regional name to be a country known as Niger Delta Republic.
Still in the South-South, an application has already been deposited in the United Nations office in Washington by a certain Offiong Offiong and others seeking to have Akwa Ibom State alone as a country.
A section of Delta State, the Isoko people whose ancestral patrimony encroaches to Edo State don’t want to go the way of the Ijaws, or Niger Delta Republic, so how possible would these new countries come to existence when the secessionists all have different interests?
Let’s see the possibility of these secessionist having their way or not:
THE REPUBLIC OF BIAFRA:
The struggle for the institution and formal recognition of the South East region of Nigeria as an independent country known as Biafra is almost as old as the age of Independence of Nigeria. Even after the loss of million of lives during the civil war for this same purpose till date, the principal obstacle standing the way of Biafra been actualized in this second attempt, is the “Care less”; “None involvement” of Elders/Critical Stakeholders of the region into the struggle.
About the none involvement of Elders and Stakeholders in the struggle, the Biafra Republic quest is seen everywhere as Mazi Nnamdi Kanu’s project with a cluster of youths, while the Ohanaeze Ndigbo, the socio-cultural/political organization of the region, Governors and National Assembly men of the region sit on the fence to watch what is going on about the struggle.
“Most of us Igbos have houses and businesses worth billion of Naira we built over the years in Yola, Kano, Jos, Suleja, Kaduna, Lokoja etc, and one small boy just want us to abandon them and follow him because he wants a country. Ask Nnamdi Kanu what he does to earn a living, let him tell us. If he has any, I think he will feel the pains he wants to put us through when we shall start counting our loses if we fight Northerners we live with and do business in their territories”. Chief Emeka Ikenna (Not his real name) said during an interview with 9News Nigeria Correspondent on the Biafra Struggle.
While Ikenna’s view about the struggle is what the generality of Igbo businessmen in Nigeria Northern States hold against “Mazi Nnamdi Kanu’s project”, another category of Igbos across the country have decided to wash their hands off the struggle considering the collateral effect of a full blown war if it comes to that.
In the other hand, Critical Stakeholders like Governors and National Assembly men see Nnamdi Kanu’s struggle as a distraction that may even put them in collusion with the government at the centre, with unpleasant resultant effects against their participation into the sharing of the national cake.
Until the Biafra secessionists reconcile these, and all Southeast States Governors, all NASS members from the region, all former political office holders, MASSOB and Ohanaeze Ndigbo all file behind Nnamdi Kanu, the Struggle for Biafra may not have its way anytime soon, but will continue to register loss of lives of people from the region.
The Oduduwa Republic struggle is another kettle of fish all together. Been pushed by a certain Sunday Igboho who sprang up like a mushroom overnight to become a raging tiger let loose to guard the territorial domain of Southwestern States, with intend to restrain the Federal Government from counting the region as part of Nigeria.
Although the struggle is hitherto rated by pundits to be a Yoruba ethnic groups re-orientation towards self-actualization to be cut off from Nigeria and be recognized as Oduduwa Republic, the Federal Government of Nigeria on the other wing is alleged to have rated Sunday Igboho’s State by State tours for his agitation for a new country with the SouthWest people as a “Yoruba carnival and youths fanfare”.
How far would Sunday Igboho and his lieutenants go when it’s not yet confirm whether or not they have submitted an application to the United Nations with undeniable facts and reasons why they should be allowed to breakup from Nigeria?
Moreover, the Federal Republic of Nigeria is currently been governed by a soldier who is wearing civilian wears just for change of garment, but still keeps the military beliefs which says: “for any struggle for secession, there must be casualties”. And so far, lives lost in the Southwest for the purpose of Oduduwa Republic struggle does not give the sitting Caesar sleepless nights to take Sunday Igboho serious, hence his mobilization of the Yoruba race for self actualization is still rated as a Southwest carnival. And in the other hand, just like the Biafra struggle, the Oduduwa agitation does not enjoy the support of all Elders, serious stakeholders, Governors, all NASS members and other political office holders of the region. This again an albatross on the neck this other set of secessionists.
NIGER DELTA REPUBLIC & IJAW REPUBLIC:
One of the greatest hindrance standing the way of all Southern Nigeria secessionists is the lack of synergy amongst them. Where they are expected to synchronize their plans to have a common front and be seen as a force that can be called for negotiation, all agitators are rather charting their respective course on individual parallel line.
This existed right from the time of Odumegwu Ojukwu for Briafra and Issac Adaka Boro who wanted Niger Delta Republic.
Ojukwu’s betrayal of Adaka Boro has always resuscitated any time the South-East wants to annex other States of Niger Delta region into their envisaged territory to form their dreamed Biafra State.
Bellow is what transpired between Odumegwu Ojukwu and Isaac Adaka Boro which the Ijaws and section of Rivers State still hold against the Igbo when the latter wants them ( Ijaw people) to be involved in their struggle for Biafra:
“Those who arrested and sentenced Isaac Adaka Boro to death for declaring Niger Delta Republic were neither Hausa-Fulanis nor Yorubas but two supposed brothers of his and Biafrans named Odumegwu Ojukwu and Aguiyi Ironsi who were still on the side of Gambaris and still trying to please them as at then. For declaring Niger-Delta Republic Ironsi, the then military head of state, ordered Ojukwu to get Isaac Boro arrested for treason”.
“Ojukwu, in an attempt to please Gambaris, fought Isaac Boro for 14 days within which he used federal might of “one-Nigeria” to kill 150 soldiers loyal to Isaac Boro, caught Isaac Boro, stripped him naked and sent him over to Lagos where Ironsi charged him to court and within just 2 months got him convicted, at the Supreme Court, of treasonable felony of trying to break away from Azikiwe’s one Nigeria, got him sentenced to death by hanging. While Ironsi and Ojukwu did all that to Isaac Boro, they left untouched their own Igbo brother soldiers who planned a coup with which they killed Innocent Hausas, Yorubas, Niger Deltans, Middle belters leaving Igbo politicians unharmed despite they, like Zik and Okpara, were part and parcel of the corrupt Balewa government”.
“However, before Ojukwu and Ironsi could execute their sentence on Isaac Boro God intervened and the counter coup happened. Ironsi was overthrown and killed. Gowon took over declared Isaac Boro innocent and released him. But just fifteen months later Ojukwu too declared Biafra Republic due to the way Igbos were being killed in the North. In declaring Biafra, rather than first apologise to Isaac Boro for what he earlier did to him and then ask for his cooperation in fighting to realize the Biafra dream, Ojukwu did nothing like that but without consulting Boro at all went as far as arrogantly including in his Biafra map the very Niger Delta areas which Isaac Boro earlier tried to pull out of Nigeria and which he (Ojukwu) nearly killed him for”.
“This angered Isaac Boro and Ken Saro Wiwa who both pledged support for Gowon in order to teach Ojukwu a bitter lesson for his arrogance and dishonesty. That was why Isaac Boro and Saro Wiwa fought on the side of Gowon during the war. Naturally Isaac Boro couldn’t have come out of prison to join the Ojukwu who jailed him and fight against the Gowon who released him. It would have been absurd. No rational human being does that”.
“This is the truth of what happened and which Igbos hate to hear but prefer to blame everyone else as if they themselves were 100℅ innocent”.
“Igbos must learn to say the truth because if the Biafra/Niger Delta Republic they now seek is founded on lies and deliberate falsehood, like Nigeria, it will not stand but will soon become a failed state like Nigeria. We can’t leave Nigeria for another Nigeria”.
The dream to see the Niger Delta region become a country has not still died despite many failed attempts.
But the present set of secessionists seem to have changed the name of Isaac Adaka Boro’s intention to call the dreamed country Niger Delta Republic to another name known as Ijaw Republic.
The above change of name was seen in a recent Press Conference held in Yenogoa, Bayelsa State capital by the National President of Ijaw National Congress, Prof. Benjamin Okaba.
In his speech, instead of reactivating Adaka Boro’s dream, Prof. Okaba is rather mobilizing the Ijaw people for an ethno-cultural nation, where citizens will only be the Ijaw people.
Parts of his address to newsmen read:
“Rather than continue to sacrifice and carry the burdens of an unappreciative Nigeria nation, we wish to state without equivocation our resolve for self determination, we are prepared to legally and peacefully negotiate our exit like other aggrieved ethnic nationalities but also as a distinct Ijaw Republic with ethno linguistic, cultural affinity and geographic contiguity and not in part or full of any other secessionist agenda”.
“This address also serves as an advance notice to all Ijaw people, our neighbours, particularly in the Niger Delta region, others oppressed and deprived and the Nigerian State, preparatory to the convocation of an all Ijaw summit that will ultimately decide on the way forward in very specific terms”,
Prof. Benjamin Okaba said.
Head or tail the agitation for Ijaw Republic is not unconnected to Isaac Boro and Ken Saro Wiwa’s experience with Odumegwu Ojukwu, thus prompting respective States of Southern Nigeria to agitate for self actualization either as an ethnic group, a State or as a region.
A section of Delta State and the Isoko people in particular have warned Biafra actors to remove Delta and Edo State from their map. This was an alarm triggered by Engr. Oghenekemo Terry, National President of Isoko Creative Elite, who frowned at Biafra promoters who annexed the two States to their map without consulting them.
While expressing the minds of the two States, Engr Terry said:
“Delta and Edo States have never been part of Biafra, so they should be expressly removed from the Biafra Map”.
Could this be one of reasons, the Biafran agitators readjusted their map to limit their dreamed country a month ago to Ndigbo States only?
That also was a great minus to the struggle they initially thought they will have bandwagon followers from the South-South and even encroached some sections in the Southwest.
Summarily, the quest for self determination and breakup from Nigeria being pushed by different Southern secessionists still have a lot of homework to do within the agitation plans.
Moreover, where the agitators drive their respective plans and everyone of them on a parallel line without a sync and synergy from one another to reach a common goal, their struggle would amount to nothing else than for unlookers to rate them as constituting national nuisance.