Leader of Biafra Independence Movement and Movement for the Actualisation of Sovereign State of Biafra (BIM–MASSOB) Ralph Uwazuruike says the lingering agitation for Biafra is because of intimidation, exclusion and harassment of the Igbo by people in power.
For those reasons, Uwazuruike admonished the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Minorities’ Issues, . Fernand de Varennes, to recognise Biafra as a sovereign state.
The BIM -MASSOB leader claimed that since 1970 till date, the Igbo numbering about 50 million have been excluded from governance in Nigeria.
Uwazuruike spoke during a zoom conference at Africa – Middle East Regional Forum on conflict prevention and protection of the human rights of minorities
The event convened by the United Nations Special Rapporteur on minority issues was organised by Tom Lantos Institute.
Uwazuruike said in a statement by his Personal Assistant, Chris Mocha, that since 1999 when the calls for Biafra regained momentum, many agitators have either been maimed or Killed.
The statement partly reads: “Because of this exclusion, humiliation, intimidation, and maginalisation of our people in Nigeria, we started again through non-violence the process of actualizing Biafra on 13th of September 1999.
“Since then, the Biafra agitators have suffered many casualties, so many of our people have been killed.
“Up till today, we no longer sleep in our various houses again because of the fact that we are still being pursued and chased by the armed herdsmen who occupy our farmlands.
“Our people can no longer go to the farms, the history is there for the global community to see what the people of Biafra are facing in Nigeria.”.
Uwazuruike said that Biafrans were one of the major tribes in Nigeria and not a minority.
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“Just by history, our people were amalgamated in 1914 by Lord Lugard with the Northern and southern protectorate. That marriage has never worked,” he added.