Ojukwu Remembrance Day: A Repeated Biafran War for Igbo People

On the 30th of May 1967, an unarmed rally took place in all Igbo lands to demonstrate their readiness of breaking ties with Nigeria to become the Biafran Republic. That was the origin of the first Nigerian Civil War that claimed important lives and properties after Col. Odumegwu Ojukwu was forced to flee Nigeria for the Ivory Coast with some of his commanders.

While celebrating as part of an effort to keep the dreams of Biafran people alive in this year, 2016, people were again sent to an early grave, due to the clashes between Nigerian security forces and Igbo people in several communities in the eastern and southern parts of Nigeria.

In Anambra State, 30 people were reportedly killed as the Nigerian Army clashed with the Igbo people who paraded the city with a native doctor in a hilux vehicle. These groups of Igbo were suspected to have started some activities which are similar to an official request of independence for the Biafran Republic along the Niger Bridge in Anambra State.

Unidentified police told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that two police officers were overwhelmed by the suspected MASSOB protesters at the tip of Niger Bridge. The two police were thrown into the nearby river, but one of them was rescued and rushed to the hospital.

According to several reports gathered from people who live in the state, over 30 people were shot dead, and 52 people were seriously injured by the Nigerian Army as a result of the agitation in Anambra State. The Public Relation Officer (PRO) for the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Emma Powerful, also confirmed similar figures for casualties while addressing the press.

Mr. Powerful stated that 30 unarmed Igbo agitators were fired dead while 50 injured were rushed to the state specialist hospital. He argued that none of the military personnel sustained injuries during the commotion.

Moreover, the suspected members of Movement of the Sovereign State of Biafra, MASSOB openly marched along Anwai Road, demanding the Independence of the Biafran Republic. An eyewitness, Mr. Uche Ukueke said that a police officer was stabbed to death, while many sustained injuries during the protest. He also confirmed that the whole problem started when the police threw tear gas on the MASSOB members who were conducting a peaceful rally to mark their day.