The leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, yesterday, disclosed that the Federal Government offered him Biafra Republic while in Prison with only the five South East States as the component parts but he rejected it.
According to him, he rejected it because that did not constitute the complete Biafra, saying that he told them that he wanted a Biafra with Rivers and Benue States inclusive. The IPOB leader also claimed that he was offered an oil block and mansion in Dubai aimed at making him to abandon the cause but that he rejected them and insisted on the actualization of Biafra.
Kanu said those things were Greek gifts to buy him over and maintained that he has no price other than to actualize the restoration of Biafra Republic and liberate the Igbo.
“They gave me Biafra in prison with only the five Igbo states; I said no, I want Benue and Rivers”, Kanu said, pointing out that “Biafra is coming, there is nothing to stop it”.
Kanu, who spoke when leaders of Igbo Civil Society Coalition led by Prof. Obasi Igwe paid him a solidarity visit at his Umuahia home, also gave knocks to Igbo elites for their anti-Biafra activities, saying that they have no interest in the Igbo masses. He lambasted Igbo elites who he said are bent on scuttling the Biafran agitation, saying they were doing so for their selfish interest and challenged them to show the Igbo masses what they have been able to do for them since their romance with Nigerian Government. He said they would not succeed.
Kanu lamented the deplorable condition of roads in Igbo land and general lack of social amenities and wondered what the elites have been doing in Abuja other to fight for their self interests. He further dismissed Igbo elites whom he said had thought he could be bought over, saying he has no price tag. “They can’t buy us with money.
If I can turn down oil block, turn down mansions in Dubai, what can they offer us? All the roads in Biafra land are in deplorable condition, yet we have elites who are just interested in their pockets. “All the roads in Biafra are bad. Apart from Okpara (late Michael Okpara), Mbonu Ojike and Sam Mbakwe, I have not seen any elite in Igbo land. Let them show us what they have done, no roads, no water, nothing. Because they are in Abuja, they are now elites, let them show us what they have done for the people as elites.
“They said everything has price, I told them that Nnamdi Kanu has no price. All of you here know my wife, I sacrificed her for two years; so what can they offer me. “Self actualization is not war. We are not for war. We are not talking of war but self actualization. Self determination is not war. Any elite that interprets self determination to be war does not understand English. “Biafra is coming; there is nothing that can stop it, no matter the level of intimidation and blackmail. Some people are running around, saying why must it be Nnamdi Kanu, why not me.
I am not an elite, I was born to restore Biafra. We are not interested in any violence, self actualization is not violence”, Kanu said. Adding to the IPOB leader’s statement, Media and Publicity Secretary for IPOB, Emma Powerful said Kanu’s position has always been clear. “Our leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu had discussion with government in prison and he rejected every offer and demanded a referendum in all the states in South East and South South, including those of our brothers and sisters living in some parts of Benue, Edo and Kogi States.
Federal Government should fix a particular date for the people to decide where they want to be. We cannot afford to abandon those in Igbanke, Igala, Idoma and Igede because they are Biafrans unless they decide otherwise.
“To join or be part of Biafra is not by force but through referendum, we ascertain who wants to be part of Biafra or not.” In his remarks, the leader of the delegation, Prof. Obasi Igwe commended Kanu and IPOB for their non-violence approach to the agitation and urged him to maintain that approach. He said their aim of visiting him was to encourage him and urge him to ensure that the Igbos have one voice for peace and prosperity of Igbo nation, the entire Eastern region, southern region as well as the middle belt.
In an interview, Prof. Igwe insisted on non-violence approach to the issue, and called for appropriate sanctions for the Arewa youths who gave the Igbo quit notice.