Movement to re-secede

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Nwachineke
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Movement to re-secede

Post by Nwachineke » Thu Sep 21, 2017 4:30 pm

There is no central authority coordinating the Biafran re-secession campaign. The Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) is one of the numerous groups advocating for a separate country for the people of south-eastern Nigeria.[37] They accuse the state of marginalising the Igbo people. MASSOB says it is a peaceful group and advertises a 25-stage plan to achieve its goal peacefully.[38] It has two arms of government, the Biafra Government in Exile and Biafra Shadow Government.[39]

The Nigerian government accuses MASSOB of violence; MASSOB's leader, Ralph Uwazuruike, was arrested in 2005 and was detained on treason charges. He has since been released. In 2009, MASSOB launched an unrecognized "Biafran International Passport" in response to persistent demand by some Biafran sympathizers in the diaspora.[40] On 16 June 2015, the Supreme Council of Elders of the Indigenous People of Biafra, another pro-Biafra organization, sued the Federal Republic of Nigeria for the right to self-determination within their region as a sovereign state.[41]

Another group, Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), led by a United Kingdom-based Biafran, Nnamdi Kanu, reinvigorated the quest for Biafran realisation in 2012. He established a pirate radio station to champion the Biafran cause, Radio Biafra, which has been broadcasting at various frequencies around the world. The Nigerian Government, through its broadcasting regulators, the Broadcasting Organisation of Nigerian (BON) and Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), has sought to clamp down on the UK-based station with limited success. On 17 November 2015, the Abia state police command seized an IPOB radio transmitter in Umuahia.[42][43] Kanu was detained by the federal government and released on 24 April 2017. Meanwhile, the group, Biafra Nations Youth League (BNYL) comprising mainly members from the Cross River, Akwa Ibom, Bakassi Peninsula, Rivers, Delta, Bayelsa and members of Igbo extraction have organised series of grassroots congress especially in towns such as Ikom, Eket, Bakassi, Itu, Ikwerre, Obudu, Ahoada and other areas of their influence, one of their Leader, Ebuta Ogar Takon, a member of the Ekoi race, disclosed to Nigeria Sun Newspaper that the BNYL struggle for Biafra independence is not limited to the Igbo People cluster of South East Nigeria alone but all inhabitants of the Bight of Biafra in Nigeria. BNYL Leadership said that the neglect of Bakassi refugees and marginalization of the Igbo, Ekoi, Ibibio and other ethnic groups of South Eastern Nigeria are among reasons for Biafra agitation.

The various groups clamouring for the restoration of the independence of Biafra have often been beset with internal wranglings that have impeded its secessionist efforts. On 19 October 2015, Chief Ralph Uwazuruike of the Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) disclosed that the director of Radio Biafra and leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, does not belong to the movement and was sacked for indiscipline and for inciting violence among members. Biafra Nations Youth League (BNYL) have continued to distance itself from the internal wranglings between MASSOB and IPOB, although, Princewill Obuka of BNYL, as reported by the New Telegraph Nigeria announced the group withdrawal from a Coalition of Pro Biafra Groups, following the union announcement declaring the IPOB Leader Nnamdi Kanu overall Leader of the Biafran struggle, this he said was done without due consultations and consideration of other people's opinions. [44][45]

There has been a renewed, intense agitation for Biafran secession. Since August 2015, protests have erupted in cities across Nigeria's south-east. Though peaceful, the protesters have been routinely attacked by the Nigerian police and army, with scores of people reportedly killed. Many others have been injured and/or arrested.[46] On 23 December 2015, the federal government charged Nnamdi Kanu with treasonable felony in the Federal High Court in Abuja.[47]

According to the South-East Based Coalition of Human Rights Organizations (SBCHROs), security forces under the directive of the federal government has killed 80 members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and their supporters between 30 August 2015 and 9 February 2016 in a renewed clampdown on the movement .[48]

A report by Amnesty International also accuses the Nigerian military of killing at least 17 unarmed Biafran separatists in the city of Onitsha prior to a march on 30 May 2016 commemorating the 49th anniversary of the initial secession of Biafra.
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