It is exactly 52 years today, since the declaration of the Republic of Biafra, by Ikemba Nnewi; Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu. After these years, the idea of Biafra has continued to live and resurface despite all efforts to keep it drowned and forgotten forever. Even after the war and after the death of the man who proclaimed it and led other faithfuls into a war against the Nigerian state, Biafra has continued to thrive and has remained ever green in our memories.
The fact is that Biafra is a natural born child of a dysfunctional Nigerian society. To understand the underlying catalyst behind Biafra, one only needs to know why Biafra was declared in the first place, in 1967. Biafra is an idea conceived as a remedy against the mind boggling blood bath. The crass mediocrity and failure of leadership. The inability of the government to demonstrate leadership and treat all Nigerians fairly and equally. The perpetual agony of the Nigerian people who were under the great trepidation of bad governance. The injustice upon injustice. Those ills then identified, upon which the birth of Biafra was necessitated as it were, seemed inseparable with the idea of one Nigeria and in which case, a viable solution would be to divorce Nigeria. This was the backdrop, the basis upon which Biafra was birthed.
In truth therefore, Biafra is not necessarily an attempt to merely secede from Nigeria, it is a worthy reaction cum alternative, proffered to the inability of the country to work. It is a reaction against the retrogressive and unproductive cooperate existence of a country that has inflicted untold sufferings upon her citizens. No one would have mentioned Biafra Republic if Nigeria was functionally sound.
Today, 52 years after the declaration of Biafra in response to these ills synonymous with Nigeria, what has changed? Has Nigeria become fair in dealing with all her people? Is Nigeria now safe for all her people? Is the country now working? Are the citizens happy?
Much of the ills of 1967 have diversified and intensified. Under these circumstances, how can Biafra be forgotten?
The fact remains that Biafra is not an Igboman’s agenda or in itself separatist agenda. Biafra is an untested proposed solution to Nigeria’s inability to work. Nigeria’s consistent, perhaps, perpetual romance with failure, injustice and bad governance, to which the people, the ordinary Nigerian people, are the real victims.
Therefore, let all Nigerians join to celebrate the idea that Nigerians can be free from the reckless killings and embarrassing government ineptitude.
Biafra will keep living, especially so long as Nigeria keeps failing.
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