…After breakup announcement, appointment of ministers,
- He’s messing up the struggle –MASSOB leader
From Petrus Obi, Enugu
The leader of the Biafra Zionist Federation, BZF, Benjamin Onwuka, who four weeks ago declared himself the President of the Republic of Biafra and named an interim cabinet has gone into hiding.
Onwuka went underground to evade arrest by operatives of Department of State Services who have been on his trail since he held the press conference where he announced the appointment of prominent individuals into this ‘cabinet’ as ministers, an act that was roundly dismissed by many as comical.
Onwuka had in his press conference about a month ago announced the names of respected personalities as members of his cabinet. They include Prof. Pat Utomi (Foreign Affairs), Professor Chukwuma Soludo (Governor, Central Bank of Biafra) and Ohanaeze President, Chief Nnia Nwodo, who was appointed as Biafra’s Ambassador to the United States. The interim government was to take off on August 1 and last until August 31, 2017.
In a recent statement, he issued from his hideout Onwuka said: “I’m not claiming to be president on my own. The United States under Obama recognized Biafra on 15th October 2014. The Zionists believe in international diplomacy.
“Let me assure those people appointed that the interim government stands until we hear from the White House. So, the interim government and our announcement on Biafra, they are still intact; we are waiting to get a reply from the US but the government we formed is intact. Upon the return of President Donald Trump from vacation, Biafra will take off. Obama and Trump will make Biafra be a reality.
“My cabinet members have reacted, some negatively, but I know they will come around; the interim government is alive but we cannot activate it until we get a signal from the White House. But I know that all those saying no now, they will later come around.
“Those we appointed from the Middle Belt are part of us; the Middle belt belongs to us, including Southern Kaduna. We are going to give Southern Kaduna statehood and the state would be called Gurara State.
“We shall also restore peace between Cross River and Ebonyi. The boundary dispute is a result of weak government. They don’t care that we are killing ourselves so long as they are taking our oil. But Biafra will not allow any form of boundary crisis. That we can assure our people. There will be absolute peace.”
Reacting to Onwuka’s interim government, leader of the Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra, MASSOB, Mr Uchenna Madu, dismissed him as a joke: “That is his own pattern. I may not condemn him, for him to say he has declared Biafra and formed his cabinet without consultation, without due process l don’t know what to say. All I know is that we are still in the struggle to restore the ancient kingdom of Biafra. For now, we have not achieved Biafra’s sovereignty. We have to follow due process; Biafra is not what anybody could just wake up at night and say, I have declared Biafra and formed a government. That is rubbish; that makes a caricature of the struggle and we can never support such. Therefore, Benjamin Onwuka is on his own. He is a joke.”
Madu spoke further: “Actually those of us in the struggle are supposed to check the excesses in the struggle but we don’t want to create the impression that we have internal wranglings. So if Onwuka likes let him say he has declared Biafra in heaven, that he is the president, no problem. Nobody is contesting the presidency but one thing is certain, one must follow the due process, and follow it non-violently. Not using violence in the struggle, that is the most important thing. So with his approach, I think he is making a caricature of himself, not even the Biafra cause because nobody is taking him seriously, even the international community, even the people of Biafra are not taking him seriously. So if he likes he can go and rest or try to re-arrange, re-strategize or learn from people like us who have been in the struggle for close to 18 years.
“He declared himself president and started naming people as members of his cabinet. Some of these people believe in Nigeria and one Nigeria; these are politicians and stakeholders in the Nigeria Project but he named them as members of his cabinet, creating the impression that those people are sponsoring the struggle when they are not. These are people who are even against the struggle; tomorrow the DSS will start harassing those people, creating an opportunity for the security agencies to start harassing Igbo leaders. And tomorrow if there is an opportunity for meaningful support to the struggle these people will shy away because somebody like Onwuka has messed up the system.” (The Sun)