By Abdulqahar Abdulahi
Although they reconciled later for reasons best known to them, these two former army heavyweights rivals are the reason why Nigeria had a civil war 54 years ago.
Obviously, many people from the SS & SE seem not to have healed instead their bitterness has gotten worse.
It is collective suicide to declare war with sticks as arms anytime. Ojukwu and Biafran leaders should have bid time as advised by Awo when Ojukwu had a secret meeting with him in his hotel.
Awo specifically told Ojukwu to allow time for other options. He also told Ojukwu to give him two weeks notice in case he decided on secession. Awo’s plane had practically not landed back in Lagos before Ojukwu declared secession.
Those who are citing Aburi accord should also go back in history to read how Azikiwe objected to secession clause being inserted
into Nigeria’s constitution during the Independence conferences in the late 50s. Yoruba had officers in the army in 1966, they had no foot soldiers.
Awo demanded the northern troops, an army of occupation be removed from Yoruba land while Yoruba men were recruited to
join the army.
Ojukwu sent his army to occupy the SW and capture Lagos. That was his second undoing. Obasanjo, the rear commander of the newly formed 3rd division ordered his men to repel Ojukwu’s army at Ore. That was the end of Yoruba lethargy and attitude towards the v and
mass murder between the north and the east. Yoruba were fully dragged to the war. They used not just brute force delivered by Igbo and Northerners.
They used collective intelligence including currency change, arms embargo, surveillance, espionage, international diplomacy, and
intelligent military and economic tactics to defeat Ojukwu’s army.
Lessons: No people or soldiers from any ethnic group must embark on ethnic cleansing the way Ifeajuana and Nzeogwu carried out their evil plan.
Northerners reacted disproportionately resulting in pogrom where
too many Igbo were killed. Ironsi and Ojukwu fuelled the anger of northerners by not prosecuting Ifeajuana, Nzeogwu and co promptly within a month of the failed coup.
Ojukwu, Zik and co should have delayed secession until the SE was ready with needed ammunition’s and other
and other logistics. Ojukwu should have instructed his army to occupy Kaduna and Kano rather than Yoruba land and Lagos. After the war ended the Igbo should never have migrated to the north the way they did.
Ekwueme & Ojukwu should never have joined the NPN, a Northern party.
If Biafra agitation is to succeed, the Igbo need to be consistent in making their case rather than their political leaders sabotaging the efforts via MASSOB and IPOB.
Yoruba also have their traitors. However you guys that are still bitter about Ojukwu’s blunder don’t need to
forgive them easily the way Igbo forgived those Igbo who always betray them. The Igbo cannot fight two or more wars at the same time. They want Biafra. That is one war, diplomatic or military.
They want to have an Igbo President. That is a diplomatic war!
In all honesty, the Igbo cannot win a diplomatic war by exhibiting too much disrespect for other nationalities like the Yoruba or the SS minorities not to mention a formidable force like the North!
When it comes to politics and power play, no region can outsmart the NORTH!
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