Biafran Truth and the Illegal Trial of Nnamdi Kanu


Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, IPOB leader

By ‘Remi Oyeyemi

“All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.” – Arthur Schopenhauer

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“I’m for truth, mo matter who tells it. I’m for justice, no matter who it’s for or against.”— – Malcom X

Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, a director of Radio Biafra
Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, a director of Radio Biafra

With trepidation, I have been watching the subtle descent into dictatorship by the administration of Muhammadu Buhari. I have been watching with disgust President Buhari’s war against freedom of speech. I am very concerned about desperate attempts by President Buhari and his sentries to muzzle the voice of self determination. I am very upset that a government of All Progressives Congress that claimed to love freedom is engaged in deliberate subjugation of innocent citizens who happens to have different views about the state of the polity.

I am very concerned that an innocent man is being denied his freedom. I am scared that an innocent man is being subjected to illegal detention. I am not comfortable that an innocent man is being tried for desiring freedom for his people. I am very disturbed that a non-violent man is being inflicted with unwarranted and undeserved travails. I am worried that a lot of unwary observers who are not properly schooled in the elementary tenets of democracy are vilifying an innocent man.
Nnamdi Kanu is an innocent man. He has not committed any crime to make him deserve the kind of treatment being meted out to him. You do not have to like Nnamdi Kanu. You do not have to agree with him or his desires for his people. But no one has the right to deny him his fundamental human right to be free. No one has the right to deny him the right to self-determine his destiny as he sees it or wants it. No one has the right to shut him up because they do not like what he is saying or because they feel threatened by what he is saying. 
Mr. Kanu’s exploits are known to all and sundry.  His desire is to have a homeland for his people. His desire is to free his people from the shackles of Nigeria. His desire is to see his people get to the promised land of Biafra. His dream is to see his people in control of their own destiny. His desire is to have a say in who governs him and his people. His desire is to ensure that no oligarchy or neo-oligarchic interests within the Ndigbo homeland is able to hold his people in bondage. His desire is to be able to water the tree of liberty for his people. There is nothing criminal in or about all this.
In all this, he has only employed semantics. He has only deployed sophistry. He had only appropriated the airwaves to be able to reach his people. He has not acquired arms. He has not killed anybody. He has not declared any armed war against anyone or organization. The only war he has ever declared is against the continued subjugation, enslavement and denigration of his Igbo people. It is a war of idea. A war of and for the minds of his people to see what he is seeing, to desire what he is desiring, to dream what he is dreaming. And he is doing that peacefully. He has been able to make his case to the majority of Ndigbo and the youths of that nation who are indeed the future of Biafra.
He is mobilizing his people to engage in the struggle to be free from their enslavement by the Nigerian State. He is making a clarion call for his people to stand up for their rights and self determine their destinies, or collective destiny. He has been innovative. He has been peaceful. He has been determined. He has been methodical. He has been deliberate. He has been consistent. He has persevered. And he is making sacrifices. There is nothing criminal in or about this.
Nnamdi Kanu has a dream: a dream of Biafra. He has a dream of the land of the Rising Sun; where there is freedom and liberty; a dream of Biafra where the people are free to be in control of their own destinies. He has a dream of Biafra where the sons and daughters of Biafra can reach for the sky and penetrate the heavens. He has a dream of Biafra where there would not be a despicable federal character that denies the talented and the gifted of Ndigbo the opportunity to achieve their potential. He has a dream where Biafra would be able to take its rightful place in the comity of nations. There is nothing criminal in or about any of this.
 So far, apart from those benefiting from the miseries of the Ndigbo nation; apart from the sentries of the status quo; apart from the carpetbaggers and political dealers of the Nigerian State; apart from the scallywags and scared agents of the Nigerian State, Nnamdi Kanu is beloved by the majority of his Ndigbo people and every lover of freedom across the world. If anyone is in doubt of this claim, they should call for the referendum of the people of the Igbo Nation. This would settle the case at least for a while.
Even, if Nnamdi Kanu is a minority voice, he is still entitled to his freedom of speech, freedom to desire, freedom of association, freedom to seek liberation for the people who may or may not want it. The fact that not many people really cares about “heaven” as the Christians call it, or “Aljana” as the Muslims call it has not stopped the Pastors, Evangelists, Reverends and the Imams from preaching their beliefs. Nnamdi Kanu should be allowed to preach his Biafran Gospel. The Ndigbo have the right to believe him or ignore him. They have the choice to follow him or reject him.
The continued detention and trial of Mr. Kanu by this administration is illegal. It is uncalled for in a free society. It is unwarranted in a democracy. It is unfair to any man or woman. It is illegal. It is unacceptable. We do not have to agree with Mr. Kanu before we all protect his rights. We do not all have to believe in Biafra before we protect his freedom. We do not have to be Igbo to protect his desire for self determination for himself and his people. We all must champion his freedom from illegal detention and trial.
From what has transpired so far, it all looks like an oligarchic conspiracy. Everything is pointing to signs of fear by the enslavers within the Nigerian State. It is suggestive that some neo-colonialists who control the levers of power of the Nigerian State are scared stiff of Biafra and other growing voices of freedom from the subjugation of the Nigerian State. The Hausa-Fulani neo-colonialists and their sentries in Yoruba land, Igbo land and Birom land, Nupe land, Kataf land, Mumuye land, Kanuri land among several others are jittery.
They are not only jittery, they are panicking. They are scared that the slaves are about to break free. They are afraid that the slaves are about to do away with their shackles and chains. They are nervous that the captives are about to break down the walls of subjugation. The dilating dawn of freedom is drowning their deceit and duplicity. They are brimming with tension. They are threatening violence against non-violence agitation. They are murdering freedom fighters and stigmatizing them as criminals. They are shooting and maiming freedom fighters and stigmatizing them as troublemakers. They are resorting to everything and anything to hold on to a modernized feudalism euphemized as “democracy.”  
Nnamdi Kanu should not worry about his being detained if he is reading this.  He should not be concerned about his trial. This is a battle between body and mind. It is a battle between injustice and justice. It is a battle between matter and spirit. In all these battles, the mind would overcome the body, justice will vanquish injustice and spirit will defeat matter. This is because Nnamdi Kanu represents an idea. It is an idea whose time has come.
Though, the Biafra idea might not be Kanu’s originally,  he is, as at present, the physical representative of that idea. It is not this idea that has created the present crisis. It is the crisis of the Nigerian State that has created the Biafran idea. The Nigerian state and its odious purveyors may be able to subjugate your body, they may be able to vilify and malign your name for desiring freedom for your people, but they would not, should not and must not be able to destroy your spirit.  They would not be able to defeat the idea of Biafra. The only people who would be able to defeat the Biafran idea are the Biafran people if they choose to. Otherwise, any effort on the part of the decadent Nigerian State would come to futility. It is a matter of time. Not a matter of if.
For those who believe in the truths of Biafra as a Nation, they should remember the words of Elvis Presley, the American music icon, “Truth is like the sun. You can shut it out for a time, but it ain’t going away.” The land of the Rising Sun is not going away. Nnamdi Kanu is not going away. The desire for self determination is not going away. The determination to be free from the shackles of the Nigerian State is not going away. Biafra is not going away.
You can take Nnamdi Kanu’s body out of circulation. You can imprison him. You can try him several times over. You can shoot, maim, kill and or murder his followers and those who believe in him, but what he stands for, Biafra, is not going away.  Biafra was conceived as an idea. The obnoxious Nigerian State is its incorrigible catalyst. Then it became a belief. It has become a dream of all proud Ndigbo. It is a dream contextualized in reality.  It is going to be achieved.
To someone like me, who believes fervently in Oodua, who prays for and preaches for the advent of an Oodua Nation, free from neo-colonialism, unbounded from the curse and shackles of the Nigerian State, Nnamdi Kanu is an inspiration. For someone like me, who believes that the emergence of an independent Oodua Nation is inevitable, Mr. Kanu is an inspiration regardless of what his detractors or enemies might say. He inspires me like Obafemi Awolowo inspires me. He inspires me like Nnamdi Azikwe inspires me.  He inspires me like Mahatma Gandhi inspires me. He inspires me like Kwameh Nkrumah inspires me. He inspires me like Jomo Kenyatta inspires me. He inspires me like Kenneth Kaunda inspires me. He inspires me like Thomas Jefferson inspires me.
The Nigerian State has a date with its destiny which is its eventual balkanization. But Biafra and Oodua Nations have dates not just with their destinies, but also with History. It is inevitable and it is unstoppable.
“In the long history of the world, only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger. I do not shrink from this responsibility – I welcome it.”
John F. Kennedy, in his Inaugural Address January 20, 1961
Please follow me on Twitter @OyeyemiRemi

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