Celebrating Nigeria’s Independence – History Lesson 4

Ojukwu

Col. Odumegwu Ojukwu at Nigerian-Biafran peace talks in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia where the Emperor Haile Selassie is chairman of the committte. Aug 5 1968.

We all know of the brutal civil war that lasted for 3 years between Nigeria and the Eastern part of the country. The eastern part of Nigeria [Mainly the ibos] wanted to become an Independent state known as Biafra. A lot of people weren’t happy about it because the Eastern part of the country is a very geographically well placed area with most if not all of the country’s Oil located there. Coupled with the easy access to sea ports etc the Nigerian government weren’t too keen on that happening at all. Biafra claimed self independence on the 30th of may 1967 and on the 17th of January surrendered unconditionally to Nigeria [Who had the help of the “ever so caring” British and its conglomerates].

“The Russians were helpful in a lot of ways: They gave the Nigerians Ilyushin bombers and MIGs and heavy artillery. And the British gave the Nigerians artillery too and advisers, and tanks and armored cars, and machine guns and mortars and all that, and endless ammunition.

America was neutral.”

When asked who owned the vast oil field in the eastern part of Nigeria [Biafra] General Ojukwu sighed and said

“We never nationalized it,” he said. “It still belongs to British Petroleum and Shell.”

The truth is that  if it weren’t for the petroleum Biafra would still exist today.

British officials feared that if Biafra were to secede many other regions in Africa would too, threatening ‘stability’ across the whole of the continent. Most of the great powers, including the US and Soviet Union, shared this view largely for the same reason.

Commonwealth Minister George Thomas wrote in August 1967 that: ‘The sole immediate British interest in Nigeria is that the Nigerian economy should be brought back to a condition in which our substantial trade and investment in the country can be further developed, and particularly so we can regain access to important oil installations’.

Thomas further outlined the primary reason why Britain was so keen to preserve Nigerian unity, noting that ‘our only direct interest in the maintenance of the federation is that Nigeria has been developed as an economic unit and any disruption of this would have adverse effects on trade and development’. If Nigeria were to break up, he added: ‘We cannot expect that economic cooperation between the component parts of what was Nigeria, particularly between the East and the West, will necessarily enable development and trade to proceed at the same level as they would have done in a unified Nigeria; nor can we now count on the Shell/BP oil concession being regained on the same terms as in the past if the East and the mid-West assume full control of their own economies’.

 

That’s all i have to say …. This issue with Syria, Iraq, bla bla british and american [Yes i spelt both names with  small alphabets] invasion Intervention didn’t start today.. If they have something to gain they will invade sorry Intervene

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