BIAFRA: THE ORIGINAL IPOB IS NOT PROSCRIBED, WINS FIRST BATTLE AGAINST
FEDERAL GOVERNMENT OF NIGERIA
Emeka Emekesiri, Esq.
1. Considering the confusions that have bedevilled the current Biafra Independence
Struggle anchored upon the rule of law and political diplomacy under the authority
and leadership of the Supreme Council of Elders of Indigenous People of Biafra, it
has become necessary for me to emphasise that the original IPOB which has been in
Court with the Nigerian Government since 2012 is not proscribed by the Federal
Government of Nigeria. What was proscribed by the Federal Government of Nigeria
is the faction of IPOB led by Mr Nnamdi Kanu who was excommunicated and
ostracised by the Supreme Council of Elders of Indigenous People of Biafra in 2014
pursuant to the Public Notice and Disclaimer dated 12 May 2014. This is in the
public domain and known to the Authorities and I need not say more.
2. We are happy to announce that the Biafrans have won in the first round of the legal
battle. In the on-going case in Suit No FHC/EN/CS/103/2019 in the Federal High
Court of Nigeria, Enugu Judicial Division, in which the original IPOB known as the
Customary Government of Indigenous People of Biafra sued the Federal Republic of
Nigeria, Attorney-General of the Federation, General Yakubu Gowon and General
Olusegun Obasanjo over the issues of self-determination for Indigenous People of
Biafra, the Biafrans applied for Injunctions by way of an Order of Mandamus in the
(1) An Order of Mandamus compelling the 1st and 2nd Defendants to refrain from
shutting down or downgrading the Akanu Ibiam International Airport in
Enugu but rather to commence actions immediately and develop the said
Airport with all facilities to make it functional as an International Airport built
and maintained by the 1st and 2nd Defendants to the required international
(2) An Order of Mandamus compelling the 1st and 2nd Defendants to commence
actions immediately for the dredging of the River Niger from Lokoja to the
Sea and to revamp, develop, equip and maintain all the seaports and riverports
in the South East and South-South Regions of Nigeria, to wit, (1) The
Azumini Obuaku Blue Seaport, (2) The Onne Seaport, (3) The Calabar
Seaport, (4) The Warri Seaport, (5) The Onitsha Inland Riverport, (6) The
Obeaku Ndoki Riverport, and (7) The Oguta Inland Riverport.
(3) An Order of Injunction compelling the 1st and 2nd Defendants to cancel and
withdraw the Radio Licence and close down the Radio Station they acquired
for the Fulani herdsmen for being discriminatory against members of the
Claimant and unlawful contrary to Section 42(1)(b) of the Constitution of the
Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999.
(4) An Order of Mandamus compelling the 1st and 2nd Defendants to refrain from
giving the sum of N100 billion (One hundred billion naira) or any sum at all to
the Fulani herdsmen as they have promised the Fulanis without granting the
same privilege to members of the Claimant and other ethnic tradesmen for
being discriminatory and an abuse of discretionary powers of the executive
arm of the government.
(5) An Order of Injunction restraining the 1st and 2nd Defendants by themselves,
or their law enforcement agents or proxies, from arresting, harassing,
intimidating, molesting, or in any other way interfering with the Claimant and
its members as they display their native flags and emblems and trademarks on
their products as they do now whilst remaining loyal and obedient to the Laws
of the Federal Republic of Nigeria until the final determination of this case.
(6) An Order of Injunction compelling the 1st and 2nd Defendants to release and
unblock the Claimant’s website at www.ipobgovernment.org and refrain from
further violating the human rights of the Claimant and its members until the
final determination of this case.
We are happy to announce that the Defendants have complied with the first prayer
without waiting for an embarrassment by an Order of Mandamus and have refrained
from shutting down or downgrading the Akanu Ibiam International Airport in Enugu
but to commence actions immediately and develop the said Airport with all facilities
to make it functional as an International Airport built and maintained by the Federal
Government of Nigeria to the required international standards.
In Paragraph 9 of the Agreement reached in a Meeting between the Federal
Government of Nigeria and the Leaders of the South East Region consisting of the
South East Governors, the President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief Barr John
Nnia Nwodo, Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen Tukur Buratai represented by Maj Gen
Abubakar Maikobi, GOC of the 82 Division, Inspector General of Police, the Police
Commissioners in the South East, and other Igbo leaders, held at the Enugu State
Government House on 31 August 2019, the Federal Government as represented by
the Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Abubakar, agreed to develop and reconstruct
the Akanu Ibiam International Airport to meet International Standards.
The Federal Government of Nigeria specifically agreed to do the following things in
line with our prayer in the Originating Summons and Motion on Notice, namely:
(a) The run-way shall be extended;
(b) Damaged tarmac shall be rebuilt;
(c) New landing equipment with night landing lights shall be installed;
(d) Renovation work shall be completed by December 2019.
(e) The Sam Mbakwe Airport in Owerri will be given a face lift to accommodate
flights that would be diverted from Enugu Airport to Owerri during the
period of renovation.
We consider that our prayer No 1 above has been answered in respect of that
particular issue before the Court. We shall therefore withdraw that prayer on 2nd
October 2019 when the Motion shall be moved for the remaining Orders of
Mandamus and Injunctions against the Federal Government of Nigeria. We
acknowledge that the 1st and 2nd Defendants have done well by refraining from
shutting down or downgrading the Akanu Ibiam International Airport but they have
not done enough for the Eastern Region.
The next action we want the 1st and 2nd Defendants to take is as contained in our
prayer No 2 above, namely:
“An Order of Mandamus compelling the 1st and 2nd Defendants to commence actions
immediately for the dredging of the River Niger from Lokoja to the Sea and to
revamp, develop, equip and maintain all the seaports and riverports in the South East
and South-South Regions of Nigeria, to wit, (1) The Azumini Obuaku Blue Seaport,
(2) The Onne Seaport, (3) The Calabar Seaport, (4) The Warri Seaport, (5) The
Onitsha Inland Riverport, (6) The Obeaku Ndoki Riverport, and (7) The Oguta
The Nigerian Government closed down or abandoned all the seaports and riverports
in the East to force our businessmen to travel to Lagos to clear their goods and be
exposed to multiple dangers and extortions on the roads. It is a well-known fact that
the majority of businessmen in Nigeria who export or import goods in international
trades are from the East. By some insidious discriminatory policies of economic
strangulation, the Federal Government of Nigeria destroyed the economy of the
East and made the people to run away from their homeland in search of greener
pastures in the west and north and foreign countries. The Federal Government
knows that as soon as the Seaports and Riverports in the East are developed and
made functional, the economy of the East shall boom with catalytic multiplier
effects to every other sector.
The original IPOB has a clear road map to our self-determination struggle. Our first
step is to achieve Regional Autonomy where the Biafrans can govern themselves,
control their resources, pay an agreed percentage tax to the Federal Government to
maintain federal institutions and develop at their own pace within Nigeria. This is
what we describe as the Biafra Project Phase II. It will not lead to the disintegration
of Nigeria but to the restructuring of Nigeria into self-governing autonomous
regions just like we have the four countries in the United Kingdom of Great Britain.
In future, if any Region decides to pull out entirely from Nigeria, it shall be done by a
referendum anchored upon the Law passed by the Regional Parliament in
agreement with the Federal Government. This is the same process being followed
by Scotland which has its own Regional Parliament (the Scottish Parliament)
working in agreement with the British Parliament. The Scottish people have
conducted Referenda several times and failed. The British Government is not
stopping them from going. If they get a simple majority in their referendum votes,
they shall become totally free and independent from the Great Britain. This is how it
works by the rule of law and political diplomacy. This is the same roadmap adopted
by the original IPOB under the authority of the Supreme Council of Elders of
Indigenous People of Biafra led by HRM, His Lordship, the Honourable Justice Eze
Ozobu OFR (rtd). We are still upholding the original vision despite the confusions
caused by the anarchists and propagandists in the Biafran Struggle.
We call upon all the people who have been deceived, confused, or misguided by the
leaders of the counterfeit IPOBs to return to their roots. It is a common
phenomenon in the world that every good thing will always have the counterfeits. It
is only a good product that thieves of intellectual property like to counterfeit. The
warning is “Caveat Emptor” (Buyer Beware). The original IPOB is not proscribed by
the Federal Government of Nigeria. It is the counterfeit that is proscribed. A
proscribed organization has no legal capacity to sue. We sued Nigeria because we
have the legal capacity to sue. We have been in Court with Nigeria for many years
over the Biafra issue. The next hearing date for our case is 2nd October 2019 at the
Federal High Court Enugu. You are invited to the Court.
We do not use false propaganda and lies to win followership. The original IPOB
works with Ohanaeze Ndigbo and the Governors of the South East to ensure that
we achieve Regional Autonomy for the Biafrans. We know the way to our freedom.
Please come back to your roots, those that have gone astray. You shall be forgiven
like the prodigal son in the Bible who strayed away from his father’s house but
returned when he realised and acknowledged his mistake.