Nnamdi Kanu, IPOB leader, in one of his court sessions during his trial. He seems to be steeped in youthful exhuberance.
This week's topic wasn't what I had proposed to dwell on but a very intelligent post in the social media by an unknown author on the Biafra agitation, plus a news report earlier in the week on Kanu's charge to his troops, to burn down Nigeria if he was arrested again, made me change my mind.
The social media article was one of the best eye-opening material I have come across on the agitation for Biafra and I intend to publish it verbatim. However, before I do that, Kanu's latest outburst, I feel, requires that I once more chip in a word or two.
Kanu who was addressing the members of Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, which he leads, had condemned a story by the Sun Newspaper which allegedly reported that he was on the run.
Kanu, apparently miffed by the report, charged his followers to burn down Nigeria if he was rearrested by the federal government. He spoke ahead of his appearance in court on October 17.
It will be recalled that Kanu, since being granted bail, had flagrantly flouted all his bail conditions that included not appearing before a crowd of more than ten, not granting press interviews, among others.
The full list of Kanu's bail conditions is as follows:
Kanu must not hold rallies. He must not grant interviews. Must not be in a crowd of more than 10 people. The IPOB leader must provide three sureties in the sum of N100 million each. One of the sureties must be a senior highly placed person of Igbo extraction such as a senator. The second surety must be a highly respected Jewish leader, since Mr. Kanu said his religion is Judaism. The third surety must be a highly respected person who owns landed property and is resident in Abuja. The IPOB leader must deposit his Nigerian passport. He must also deposit his British passport with the court. He must provide the court with reports on the progress of his health and treatment on a monthly basis. The order for him to deposit his Nigerian and British passports also means he cannot travel out of the country.
While we were all united in condemning what we saw as punitive bail conditions given Kanu at the time, the fact remains that no one is above the law. what Kanu has been doing since after being granted bail, pushes one to conclude that he savours breaking many of those conditions, especially those bordering on movement and the one on press interviews.
Kanu has not just been holding rallies, he has addressed people in their hundreds and been talking to the press. Now that a so-called adverse media report has been made, he is calling on his followers to destroy Nigeria.
Ordinarily, one would have allowed them to carry on with his call, but for the fact that, as the Igbos say, an elder who is at home does not allow the she-goat to have its baby while tethered.
Kanu should be again reminded that those he is asking to destroy Nigeria are people's children. What he is asking them to do amounts to committing suicide. It is criminal of him to do so, knowing what their fate will be and using his control of their minds to lead them on a path of destruction.
Perhaps, a return journey into our immediate past history will expose the hypocrisy of the Biafra agitation, as well as the tactlessness and sheer madness of Kanu's call. I hereby reproduce that master piece I got from the social media thus:
When the Biafran War happened, Igbos were ill-prepared. Ojukwu's blood was hot - an age factor. He failed to look into the future and how much Igbos would lose in that war.
He took many Igbo young men and wasted them in different sectors of war and achieved nothing. In the end, he ran away to Cote d'Ivoire - with a WOMAN. And moved on.
I am passionate about the Biafran ideology. But I won't be a party to bad strategy.
The spirit warned Ojaadili, "Ojaadili, agbakwana chi gi mgba". Don't wrestle with your chi.
I prefer to see Biafra as an ideology than a country. That's my take. I will suggest this any day, any time. Igbos want a country to be called Biafra.
Sometimes, I just wake up and begin to laugh at this humongous Biafran dream. It is good to dream - don't get me wrong. But permit me to say that Igbos are not diplomatic dreamers.
So, Igbos who are busy building the best hotels, schools, estates, businesses, bus stations, e.t.c. in the South-West and North of Nigeria, want a country to be named Biafra with its capital located where???? Excuse me?? Funny.
Ibeto Hotels in Abuja is owned by an Igbo man. New Nyanya, a major transportation company that dominates Northern routes, is owned by an Igbo man.
Efab Estates in different parts of Abuja are owned by an Igbo man. Rock Foundation Schools, one of the three best schools in Wukari in Taraba State, is owned by an Igbo woman. Deo Gratias Schools in different parts of Abuja are owned by an Igbo woman.
Many young, hustling Igbo ladies own tasty houses in Abuja and Lagos. Show me a Fulani man who owns big schools in Awka. Show me a Yoruba woman who built classy schools in Nsukka. Show me a Tiv man who has classy hotels in Owerri. Show me a Jukun woman who owns a big hotel in Aba. Show me an Igbira man who owns many estates in Enugu.
Apart from Dangote's trucks that pass by Igboland for delivery, show me one Hausa man whose transportation company is domiciled in Abakiliki.
Every Yoruba man I have seen in Igboland is either a tailor or a banker or telecom worker who owns an inconsequential one-room apartment with a miserable mattress for sleeping or strafing ambitious Igbo girls who want to be laid and a miserable bucket to wash down.
Every Northern ethnic minority or majority I know in Igboland is either a driver of a commuter passing by, on temporal posting by his or her company; a well-digger, farmer, fisherman, shoemaker or banker in TRANSIT with a room to lay his head.
It is only Igbos that have the mind to live in Sokoto and Bauchi with their wives and kids, establish businesses and make investments.
And the next thing, they're talking about Biafra. Do you plan to uproot those houses and other investments or what?
Now, this three-month ultimatum...
Why not? Why won't they? They know you will lose again like in 1970. Where are the agitators asking for a new country? It is time to host their brethren who will soon saunter home for safety. Prepare rooms for them, please. Those Northern youths mean business.
If you have lived in Northern Nigeria, you would know that Hausas don't play. When they mean war, it is war. One Hausa man can disorganise a million people. They get mind ooooh. One of them can go on suicide bombing just to exterminate a thousand Southerners in a motor park.
Those guys don't joke. Don't be deceived that they are mere threats. They make good their threats. I don't see this APC government interested in frustrating that threat. Igbos, start tidying up to push eastwards.
Decongest your presence in Northern Nigeria. Stand ON one leg... like a chicken brought to a new ground. Stop feeling at home if indeed, you want Biafra. Invest in the East. Have only annexes in these other states. You make yourselves vulnerable when you live like this.
Keep your wives and kids at Enugu, Aba, Onitsha, e.t.c., and after chasing money, return home. Have a miserable room to lay your heads and strafe their babes if you can deal.
Go HOME. Stop strutting the Northern areas like you are helpless.
They hate you with the strongest passion. They have only been tolerating you. And now, they are done. Peace? It's over.
Don't be that tree that waited till men came with machetes to make firewood of it.
I am pushing eastwards next month. I won't wrestle my chi. It's no One-Nigeria anything. The one who wins the war is the one who strategizes better.
Nnamdi Kanu is human. Don't always take his words for it. People change as they grow older. The Ojukwu that returned to Nigeria in the 80s turned out different from the one who led the Biafrans to war.
He had his regrets before he died. He identified the Biafran mistakes. Yet Ojukwu was of brave stock.
Ten years from today, Kanu's disposition won't remain the same. Mark this. Because he is human.
Ojukwu's family experienced the war. All his kids and official and secondary wives all experienced it. Kanu's wife and kids are in the UK.
Well, what more can anyone add to this, save to say that he that has ears should hear. Kanu, I'll always say, isn't getting it right. He should listen to the elders or go it his own way with the attendant consequences. Such consequences are always tragic. I rest my case