* Kanu Emerges New ECA Leader
By Teddy Nwanunobi
Abuja (Sundiata Post) — The continued refusal to accept a peaceful restructure of Nigeria will only make the demand for secession grow louder and louder, the Eastern Consultative Assembly (ECA) has declared.
“The demand (for Biafran Republic) will only grow louder, until justice is done,” the Assembly maintained in a communiqué.
This is even as the ECA has unanimously elected the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, as its new leader.
During its meeting, on Tuesday, the ECA said that false and bogus census figures, which give the North superior majority over the South, is one of the major reasons for agitations for the revalidation of the Biafran Republic.
Following the meeting, the ECA issued a communiqué, which was jointly signed by its Deputy Leader and Matron, and Publicity Secretary, Mrs. Marie Okwo and Rev. Fr. John Odey, respectively.
The communiqué particularly attacked two northern leaders, Alhaji Tanko Yakassai and Alhaji Bashir Dalhatu, over their recent comments on restructuring and Biafran agitation.
“The ECA dutifully informs our respected elder statesman, Alhaji Tanko Yakassai, that his claimed annoyance over the agitation for secession by the great IPOB is misplaced.
“Alhaji Yakassai should kindly provide answers as to why Zamfara State with NPC acclaimed population of over five million people should immunise only 74,000 under five-year children during the anti-polio vaccination exercise, while Imo State with NPC population of under three million immunised over 300,000.
“JAMB and WAEC figures year, after year also confirm the fraudulent census figures. Zamfara and Sokoto states, with a combined NPC alleged population of over 11 million, enrol only 40,000 candidates, while Anambra State alone, with an NPC population of three million, produces over 400,000 candidates. That’s man’s inhumanity to man.
“British colonial officer, Harold Smith, admitted how they deliberately, falsely empowered the North to ruthlessly use bogus population figures to dominate the South. Dear Sir, the fraudulent and oppressive census figures is one of the reasons the East can no longer accept Nigeria as presently structured. The deliberate asphyxiation of our people, with a very wicked state and local government creation based on land mass, is another reason, Sir.
“The falsehood that Gen. Ironsi restructured Nigeria is another wicked lie, Sir. Everybody knows that the very first decree of Gen. Yakubu Gowon on August 3, 1966 was to revert to the original regions. Ironsi merely changed the nomenclature from regions to group of provinces.
“The same Gowon unilaterally created 12 states on May 26, 1967, just to split the Igbo with the Eastern minorities (according to Gowon’s interview last year). The unilateral creation of states and local government areas by Northern generals in 1976, 1987, 1991 and 1996 is at the root of the demand for Biafra by millions of Eastern youths, Sir.
“The refusal to peacefully restructure Nigeria, Sir, is the reason the demand for secession is growing louder and louder. The demand, dear Sir, will only grow louder until justice is done, Sir. As for Alhaji Dalhatu and his Northern delegates to the confab forum, we say your position by opposing the peaceful restructuring of Nigeria excites and fuels the secessionists,” the communiqué read in part.
In his acceptance letter written from Kuje Prisons to the Assembly, Kanu lamented what he called the continued treatment of Easterners like slaves by the present Federal Government.
He accepted to play the new role, and pledged not to let the people down.
“I am honoured by this election; I hope all the affiliate groups in this coalition will soon join hands with us in our peaceful and non-violent pursuit of a referendum that will allow the people decide their future.
“The horrendous injustice visited on us daily by our oppressors has since gotten to a point where we can no longer tolerate the position of eternal slavery, which they carefully crafted for us and have ruthlessly executed over the years. Our children today and generations to come do not have a future.
“Our youths are despondent, our once truthful and outspoken elders frightened and silenced, our politicians compromised and our leaders bought over. Our present status as a race and a people is one of utter hopelessness and servitude.
“Our only hope for the future lies in a peaceful plebiscite that will settle once and for all time the burning issues that confront us today. I commend the ECA, and strongly believe that I will not let you down.
“Once again, I say thank you for this great honour,” Kanu said in his letter of acceptance/appreciation.
Meanwhile, the new leadership structure, as announced by the ECA, include: Secretary, Evangelist Elliot Ugochukwu-Uko; and Assistant Publicity Secretary, Dede Uzor A. Uzor.
Others are: former Vice President, Dr. Alex Ekwueme, erudite Professor Ben Nwabueze (SAN), and the Catholic Archbishop of Owerri, Rt. Rev. Dr. Anthony Obinna as the patrons.