Provocative speeches can’t give us Biafra – Ohanaeze chief tells Nnamdi Kanu

Nnia Nwodo

President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief Nnia Nwodo, has advised the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, to retrace his steps, saying that no amount of abusive, provocative and flammable speeches can give the Igbo Biafra or restructuring.

Nwodo in an open letter to Ndigbo, which he released on Thursday night, noted that a recorded speech made by the IPOB leader streaming in the social media wherein he had threatened that he (Nwodo) would not leave Germany alive if he attended the New Yam festival of Ndigbo Germany, where former Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, was eventually assaulted.

The Igbo leader denied being an accomplice to the invasion of Kanu’s homestead in Umuahia by the Nigerian Army in Operation Python Dance.

He also denied being a Fulani stooge who would always do the beckoning of the ruling Fulani elite in Nigeria.

He, therefore, challenged Kanu to give him a single evidence of his involvement in conspiring with Operation Python Dance operatives.

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Part of the letter read: “Notwithstanding these abundant evidences of my championing IPOB cause, he ordered an invasion of my telephone with numerous insulting calls and threats to my life. My home in Ukehe was bombed. Police investigations of these incidences linked some of them to IPOB members. Their lawyers approached me and I thought that a father taking his son to court and subsequently to jail would be un-Igbo. Notwithstanding their confessional statements, I withdrew my compliant against them and they pledged to be of good behaviour.

“No matter how sectional, incompetent or unproductive I consider the president of Nigeria to be, I must respect his age and office in my criticisms of him. As for the attack on my late father, I forgive Nnamdi. My father was Zik’s minister and Okpara’s minister. My father and late Chief M.N. Ugochukwu were some of the prominent financiers of the Biafran war. I fought in the Biafran war myself as a Biafran soldier at a very young age without my parents objecting.

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“Odumegwu Ojukwu was like my elderr brother. Bianca can attest to our closeness and my loyalty to him. Vice President Alex Ekwueme was my mentor and friend. Nnamdi Azikiwe confided in me and treated me like a son. M.I. Okpara was the chairman of my wedding. Late Dr. Dozie Ikedife was the first person to sign my nomination form for the office of President General of Ohanaeze. None of these Igbo leaders found me a traitor of Igbo cause. Everywhere I have been in Igboland, young men and women embrace me, pose for photographs with me and commend my efforts in championing our case. I salute them all.

“I was one of the agents that put together the Southern and Middle Belt Leadership Forum. No pressure group in Nigeria is as strong as this group in the struggle to restructure Nigeria. Restructuring Nigeria will give the South East sovereign independence in the control of our natural resources and political control of our government structures. Short of a war, you can’t force Nigeria to grant us Biafra. I believe that working together we can achieve a referendum/constitutional amendment or a plebiscite. That will be a first step to self-determination. The journey of Catalonia and Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic are examples of how long and tedious the struggle for self-determination is in our contemporary world. Let’s go step by step and without acrimony.

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“I have noted the threats to my life from the IPOB leader. I leave that to God and the law.”

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