By Max Nduaguibe
“The Propaganda of Igbo Domination: The Biafra Conflict and the politics of Divide and Conquer.
It may interest you to know that during and immediately after the civil war, Saro Wiwa & family, and then young captain Sani Abacha and family lived in and shared the seized gigantic mansion of Ojukwus father in port harcourt. Saro Wiwas kids called captain Abacha, “uncle Sanni”. This was in the early 70s.
Fast forward to early 90s and “uncle Sanni” hangs daddy Saro.
The idea to seize Igbo properties only in Port harcourt was to ensure that the bitterness, hate and distrust between the two brother regions never healed. OC Nwali and Okogbule Nwonodi warned Niger deltans against this, but the glee and rejoicing by the EK Clarks camp was too raucous.
The trouble for Saro Wiwa, Elechi Amadi and EK Clark started when immediately after the war, captain David Mark was drafted in to share the abandoned properties in port harcourt. This was despite the agreement that indigenes would share them.
The Niger delta servants of the Fulanis started feeling the Tinubu treatment immediately after the war. EK Clark who was given information minister during the war was dropped and have struggled for the rest of his life to touch a government post.
Elechi Amadi was abandoned and he remained brutally and abjectly poor until Amaechi tried to rehabilitate him at dying age.
Saro Wiwa was serially humiliated from immediately after the war and never got that illusive happiness from Fulanis.
With the Fulanis and British eye on oil, and with documented fears of Britain to negotiate with Igbo’s, who they hated for knowing even more than they the white man knew, (for every British professional expatriate in the 50s, there were 3-8 superiorly educated and exposed Igbo’s.
So, Britain wanted Igbo’s away from oil negotiations.
This led to the advice to Gowon to cut Elele, Asa, Ndoki, Ndoni and some other Igbo communities into the new rivers state they created for stark illiterate 23 year old korofo naval boy, Diette Spiff to run.
Then they feared that Ikwerre blood tie & proximity to Igbo’s will return them to their Igbo identity, so, they asked Gowon to pay and commission captain Elechi Amadi who was a literary practitioner and author, but who felt overshadowed by Achebe, and thus, hated Igbo’s like hell, to rewrite the Ikwerre language and create a new Ikwerre language.
So, okuko becomes ochucho, onyeisi = nyerisi, nw =w, as in wike, nwobo=Wobo. The British clandestinely funded to language alteration project to reduce the Igbo’s to minority, so as to face less hectic trade negotiations in future. They also feared that Igbo’s might start spreading to run other African states due to their expansive westernization and individual wealth.
All these hatred were justified as result of Igbo’s running Port harcourt through Enugu the capital. The British who are detailed historians, found every bit of fear mongering and annoying story of domination to whip up hysteria amongst the Niger deltans.
Where there were facts, they greatly exaggerated them. Lazy men who couldn’t compete in life started blaming Igbo domination for their failures.
The war was a connivance of convenience as the British bombed the Igbo’s, while Nigeria blockaded them for starvation purposes.
This occurrences are in the past.
They shouldn’t raise emotions amongst Niger deltans or Igbo’s. They’re just history.
We shouldn’t let them repeat.”