The struggle for Biafra has met another gridlock as a socio-political group in the oil-rich region of Nigeria identified as the South-South Patriots (SSP), has declared that they would not be part of the Biafra agitation for the actualization of a sovereign state.
The group arrived at its decision yesterday, June 15, at the end of a one-day executive meeting in Calabar, Cross River state, declaring that the South-South region is not part of Igbo’s agitation for self-determination under a yet-to-be-realised country called Biafra.
According to a 12 point communique signed by Prince Kingsley Ndedu, leader of the South-south Patriots; the secretary Joseph Udoh; chief mobilization officer Aigberemhon Moses and three others, the group’s decision is based on the fact that the Igbos are only seeking to dominate other minority groups in the former Eastern region.
The communiqué reads in part:
“It is on the record that, in the year 1966 the Igbos derailed the first democratically elected government through a coup led by Chukwuma Kaduna Nzeogwu in an attempt to suppress Nigeria and Nigerians.
“The Igbos domineering tendencies they attempted on Nigeria in 1966 that could not be achieved is now tilted towards the south-south geopolitical zone which is totally not acceptable.
“Self-determination can actually be achieved in two ways mainly: peaceful means through a referendum, and war, which is the most painful with loss of lives.
“Eritrea achieved theirs through war. In the case of Southern Sudan, the country has seen no peace after the peaceful separation from North, as the country is now in civil war.
“The Biafra issue will be the same story as Southern Sudan trying to force other territories into Biafra agenda is unacceptable and will be resisted for the fact that no referendum has been made to determine the territory called Biafra as shown in their so-called map.
“The Igbos marginalized the south-south by deliberately not building a single government owned schools in south-south region during their reign in the defunct Eastern region.
“For selfish benefits only developed palm fruit/rubber plantation and others in south-south and employed our people as laborers then pay them pea-nuts.
“The only roads then led to their plantations (hence) we are not part of and cannot be part of Biafra.
“We sincerely demand restructuring of Nigeria (and) true federalism to be implemented. “Igbos failed in leadership when they let go southern Cameroun through a referendum under the leadership of Nnamdi Azikiwe.
“They watered down or weakened the political influence of the South southerners in person like Prof. Eyo Ita and others, while northern Cameroun was withheld by the Northern leaders.”
Meanwhile, the Biafra People National Council (BPNC) which is a coalition of all the groups agitating for the actualization of the sovereign state of Biafra, has said that Igbos must use the opportunity presented to them by the recent quit notice order issued by the Arewa youths.
The coalition described the quit notice as a divine intervention.
The group urged Igbos living in the north not to put their confidence in the promises by Northern politicians and the federal government to protect them, asking them to take the threat seriously and start returning to Biafra land.