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Biafra: The Civil War With Nigeria Never Ended, We Fought In Self Defense —Onyeka Onwenu |The Republican News

Nigeria’s lady of songs, activist journalist, Onyeka Onwenu has said the Igbo people will make no apologies for going to war with Nigeria, as according to her, the Biafra was a war brought on them and they had to fight in self defence.

Onwenu who spoke on Monday in Lagos at the ‘Never Again Conference’ organised by Nzuko Umunna, an Igbo sociocultural group, to mark 50 years since the end of the Biafra war in 1970, also recalled how her widowed mother’s property was seized in Port Harcourt, Rivers State after the war.

She said the Biafra is a very sensitive and painful matter that ought to be addressed.

“This is a subject matter that is very close to our hearts,” she said. “It’s very personal to very many of us, very sensitive matter; very painful matter indeed. And yes, some of us have lived with some bitterness. And we make no apologies about that. We were a people in war, led into war, not by our own wishes or design, but in self defence. No apologies Nigeria, no apologies to the world.

“But here we are. I was born and raised in Port Harcourt. My father, Dike Onwenu was the first Arondizuogu man in the federal house, and he was representing Port Harcourt constituency. He was the principal of Enitonna High School. He was a brilliant man. But he died too early. I’m from Abia State since I’m an Aro daughter. I’m from Imo State, Arondizuogu and I’m also from Anambra where my mother comes from. I can go there and live and nobody can stop me.

“I’m also from Lagos State. I married a Yoruba man. I have two Yoruba children.”

Onwenu said she fought the Biafra war and recalled many children and aged people dying in her care. She regretted that the war has not yet ended, and warned those still fighting the Igbo to be careful.

“I fought the war as a young girl between 14 and 17 years, and I lost many relatives. I carried babies who died in my arms. I treated old people who took days to die. People were dying of hunger, even our soldiers were dying out of hunger. But thank God we survived.

“When my father died at 40, he was a politician and also a principal. But he didn’t have much money. In those days, you had to keep your day job, even if you were a member of the House of Representatives. Yes, my mother, an Anambra woman, was a trader. She was richer than my dad, so my dad would borrow money from her to buy land and he never paid back. You know how it is with husband and wife.

“At the end of the war, I couldn’t go back to Port Harcourt. My home was abandoned property. Those of you who come from Port Harcourt know the story. The home that a widow, my father had only laid the foundation when he died in an accident; the building that a widow built was seized as an abandoned property.

“And living just adjacent to us on Hospital Road were the Ikokus. In fact, I thought we were related because every family in Port Harcourt was together. You didn’t care were anyone came from or who they were, whether you were from Port Harcourt or not. Every parent had the right to reprimand a child he/she saw misbehaving. Port Harcourt was a beautiful town, but we couldn’t get back to it.

“So, for me, the civil war never ended, it is still going on. My poor mother went back to Port Harcourt to claim her property and she was beaten into a coma by people whom she had helped all her life; people she had helped to send to school, because she is an Igbo woman and now Port Harcourt belonged to another group of people.

“They forgot the sacrifices that the Igbo made. It is still going on, no apologies have ever been made about that. The road that is now referred to as Harold Wilson Road used to be Dike Onwenu Road. That’s on account of the sacrifices that the Onwenus, the Ikokus, and the rest, made in building up Port Harcourt.

“Here I am. I travelled outside, thanks to my sister who was at Harvard at the time. But we all came back to develop Nigeria. I have tried with the little talent that God has given me, to use it to the betterment of my society and my country. But if I were a Yoruba or a Hausa woman, I would probably have had more patronage, more help and more support than I have got by my self-help effort to raise this country up.

“But I’m not asking anybody for anything. I put myself through school, my widowed mother did her best. I was working two jobs in America to put myself through school. I didn’t want to take the Nigerian scholarship because they were giving it to everybody, those who deserved it and those who didn’t. And many of them were not even in school.

“I’m angry at Nigeria, I’m angry at this government which seems to be letting us down. I’m angry at us as a people, I’m angry at my people, Ndigbo. Because he who is rejected doesn’t reject himself. Stop complaining and do it yourself. We have always been able to do that. How did we build Imo Airport? Nobody built for us. We spent many years raising money. I was travelling all over the country to do free concerts to raise money for Imo Airport. That’s who we have been. And I remember that in those days, if the Igbo State Union decides, that’s it, everybody follows the line and gets it done.

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I’m Not Dollars You Can Pocket Recklessly And Sheepishly – Wike Replies Ganduje |The Republican News

Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers state has blasted his Kano State counterpart, Abdullahi Ganduje, for threatening to take him to court over the reported demolition of Rainbow Town Central Mosque in Trans-Amadi area of Port Harcourt, Rivers State capital.

Wike received serious backlash during the week over reported claims he demolished a mosque. He has since denied the claim.

Ganduje in a statement released today vowed to drag Governor Wike to court over the alleged demolition of the mosque.

Read here.

Reacting to Ganduje’s threat, Governor Wike in a statement released by his media aide, Simeon Nwakaudu, said the Kano state governor should be reminded that he, Wike, is not a dollar bill Ganduje can pocket” sheepishly and recklessly”.

Ganduje was involved in a bribery scandal last year after footage of him purportedly receiving wads of dollar bills from contractors in his state surfaced online.

Read Governor Wike’s statement below.

It beats my imagination that Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Umar Ganduje is still in the habit of making irresponsible comments about Rivers State. Up till now, Ganduje is yet to realise that Governor Wike is not dollars that he can pocket recklessly and sheepishly.

I saw a statement released by Abdullahi Umar Ganduje. He said that he will sue Governor Wike over the falsehood that a Mosque was demolished in Port Harcourt. For the umpteenth time, no Mosque was demolished by Governor Wike. No Mosque was demolished by the Rivers State Government.

The story was a fabrication by one Alhaji Tobacco. The fabrication was orchestrated by Daily Trust and The Nation Newspapers for obvious mischievous political reasons. These baseless press releases confirm the ugly plot.

Several journalists and civil society groups have visited the disputed land and no traces of any Mosque were found at the location. Governor Wike personally led journalists to the disputed land and the world saw that no Mosque existed there.

On Saturday, the Rivers State Islamic Leader/Vice President General, Rivers State Council for Islamic Affairs, Alhaji Nasir Uhor stated that there was no physical structure of a Mosque at the disputed land at Rainbow Town in Port Harcourt. He said the insinuation that any structure was at that location was not true. He also admitted that a Rivers State High Court confirmed that the disputed land belongs to the Rivers State Government.

Suit Number PHC/986/2012 between Registered Trustees of Trans-Amadi Mosque, Port Harcourt (Claimant) and the Commissioner, Ministry of Urban Development and Physical Planning, Rivers State, the Governor of Rivers State and the Attorney General of Rivers State (Defendants) was resolved by Justice G.O. Omereji on Tuesday, 27th November 2018. This matter pre-dated Governor Wike.

Justice Omereji of the Rivers State High Court held that: “The defendants have in Exhibits J, J1 and J2 inclusive of Exhibit K, which is the Certificate of Title, established that the land, the subject matter of this suit, was acquired in 1959 by the Government.

“My humble opinion is that the claimants have not established that they have a better title to the land, the subject matter of this suit and they have not established that at the material time they were in possession and that the defendants do not have a better title to the land”.
The Court further ruled that the claimants had no approval to build on the disputed land.

The entire world is aware of the above facts. Nobody has circulated any photographs or videos of the said Mosque that Ganduje and other APC Chieftains are harping on. They merely want to use a non-existent Mosque story to score ugly political points.

Pray, what redress would Ganduje be seeking in court when he sues Governor Wike? Would Ganduje tell the court to relegate the Rivers State Ministry of Urban Development and Physical Planning and enthrone its Kano State Counterpart? Would Ganduje be asking the Court to hand over jurisdiction to Kano State High Court?

Under the Land Use Act, the governor is responsible for allocation of land in all urban areas to individuals’ resident in the state or to organizations for residential, agricultural, commercial and other purposes. Perhaps, Ganduje would be telling the Court to deny the Rivers State Governor of such powers, while he retains same powers under the Land Use Act in Kano State.

The Press Statement attributed to Ganduje is a confirmation that this country is at its lowest point. This is the worst form of administrative ignorance.

As a Governor with a bruised ego, Ganduje thinks that this religious falsehood would afford him a backdoor entry into the national good book. Sadly, he has exposed himself as a terribly ignorant leader who basks in baseless claims.

The disputed land is already before the court, as the Registered Trustees of Trans-Amadi Mosque, Port Harcourt (Claimant) sued the Rivers State Government in 2012. Having lost at the Court of First instance, these trustees have appealed the judgment.


GANDOLLARS MAY HAVE FORGOTTEN

On December 8, 2016, Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, as Chairman of the Rivers State APC Election Rerun Campaign Committee, threatened violence on Rivers people at the Yakubu Gowon Stadium.

Alongside several APC Governors, Ganduje called on APC thugs to unleash mayhem on Rivers electorate for the purpose of rigging the rerun elections. He claimed that the aim was to ensure that the APC took control of the House of Assembly for the purpose of impeaching Governor Wike.

The APC Federal Government deployed 57,000 security personnel, billions of naira, millions of dollars, Jet Fighters and Gunboats for the rerun elections. Rivers people stood with Governor Wike and the APC was roundly defeated. Rivers people rejected the plot to pocket Governor Wike by the APC rigging machine.


GOVERNOR WIKE IS NOT DOLLARS

Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, a man who enjoys bribery and falsehood, must realise that Governor Nyesom Ezenwo Wike is not dollars that he pockets with ridiculous abandon. Governor Wike is a lover of the rule of law, due process, religious tolerance and peaceful co-existence. He cannot be intimidated by the illiterate threat of a lawsuit from a man of low moral standing.

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Showdown In Port Harcourt As Amaechi’s Security Aides Attack Wike’s Convoy |RN

Amaechi-and-Wike-Clash

Scene ofthe clash between Amaechi security aides and Wike’s security convoy

  • Gov’s escort rider knocked down, policemen in pilot car attacked

…Wike’s men were the aggressors –Minister’s media office

From Tony John, Port Harcourt

There was an showdown yesterday in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, between Governor Nyesom Wike and the Minister of Transportation, Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, with both men accusing each other of attempted assassination, as their security details clashed. 

A statement from the Government House, Port Harcourt, which gave an account of the incident said that Governor Wike escaped assassination when the Federal Special Anti-robbery Squad (F-SARS) and soldiers in the motorcade of the minister, who was in Port Harcourt, attacked his convoy.

Special Assistant to the Rivers State Governor, Electronic Media, Simeon Nwakaudu who signed the statement  said the governor was on project inspection when the incident occurred at Nwanja junction on Trans-Amadi Road, Port Harcourt, adding that Wike was not harmed despite the attack. 

  Nwakaudu explained that F-SARS personnel and soldiers in the minister’s convoy knocked down the governor’s escort rider and attacked the policemen in the pilot car.

According to Nwakaudu, the minister’s Aide-De-Camp, simply identified as Debewari, allegedly supervised the attack, which included damage of cameras held by journalists.

He also alleged that the Commander of Rivers SARS, Mr. Akin Fakorede, who received the Minister of Transportation at the Port Harcourt International Airport, Omagwa, also witnessed the incident.

  The governor’s  aide said that after the attack, Wike continued with his inspection of projects. 

  A reaction from Amaechi’s media office, however, alleged that the minister narrowly escaped being shot by security men attached to Wike, but ended up vandalising his car instead.

The statement reads: “In a blatant show of naked raw power, minister of Transportation, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, this afternoon (yesterday) narrowly escaped being shot by security men attached to the governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike.  His car wasn’t that lucky though. The car was vandalised with a broken side mirror.

  “The incident occurred in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, along Trans-Amadi road, Nwanja axis. The minister had arrived Port Harcourt this afternoon (yesterday).

  “Accompanied by cars of many of his supporters, the minister’s black jeep was intercepted and blocked at the junction by the security motorcycle outrider attached to Wike after two cars had passed through. One of the two cars had security men assigned to protect the minister in Port Harcourt.  Suddenly, gun-totting security men attached to Wike’s convoy, surrounded the minister’s car, threatening to shoot him. They hit the car, tried to smash the windscreens, back and side windows and broke a side mirror. All through this attack, Amaechi remained calm, inside the fortified jeep.  While the attack occurred, Wike remained inside his vehicle.

Amaechi-Wike

Gov. Nyesom Wike and Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi

  “The minister eventually passed through after the intervention of the security team on ground to protect him in Port Harcourt. However, when Governor Wike got to the point where the incident occurred after Amaechi’s vehicle had gone by, his security men blocked the road again, dragged out from a vehicle and thoroughly beat up a policeman attached to protect Amaechi in Port Harcourt.  The policeman’s rifle was also taken from him.

  “Wike came out of his car, and with his security team, was going from one vehicle to another of Amaechi supporters, charging at them, harassing and abusing them. Wike’s security men were heard loudly insulting Amaechi and called him all sorts of derogative names.

  “This is a crass show of high handedness, arbitrary behaviour and abuse of public office by a state governor who has no care for the safety of Rivers people.”   (The Sun)

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Police Officer Dismissed, Docked Over Ritualist’s Escape |The Republican News

Manwhokilled8-yr-oldgirl

Ritualist paraded with corpse of 8-year-old girl he killed for ritual

From Chris Anucha & Tony John, Port  Harcourt

The police officer, Inspector Johnbosco Okoroeze, who allegedly aided the escape of a ritualist, Ifeanyichukwu Dike, 23,  who is said to have killed eight-years-old Victory Chikamso in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, has been dismissed by the Nigeria Police.

This was disclosed in Port Harcourt yesterday by the State Police Commissioner, Mr Zaki Ahmed.

According to the police boss, Okoroeze, who was the Investing Police Officer (IPO) in charge of the ritual murder case, was dismissed by the Police Service Commission (PSC).

Besides his dismissal, Okoroeze was also arraigned at the Chief  Magistrate’s Court in Port Harcourt yesterday on a two-count charge of aiding the escape of the ritualist and assisting the murder suspect to pervert justice.

The Police Commissioner disclosed that Dike’s accomplice in the crime has also been arrested by the police.

Ahmed, who could not disclose the identity of the second suspect, explained that the prime suspect mentioned his name, as the client who hired him (Dike) to procure human parts for money rituals.

“During interrogation, Dike linked him to the murder of the eight years old girl,” he said.

Also, the River State Police Command has promised to give a cash reward of N1 million to anyone who could give the police useful information that would lead to the arrest of Dike.

Meanwhile, a Chief Magistrate’s  Court in Port Harcourt has ordered that the former policeman to be remanded remand in prison.

Okoroeze, 34 wept profusely as he was brought to the court in handcuffs in a bus with number plate FG  128 F50. 

Count one of the charge against him reads: “That you Johnbosco, on the 19th of August, 2017, at about 2030 hours at the State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department, Port Harcourt, in the Port Harcourt Magisterial District, did assist one Ifeanyi Maxwell Dike, who is to your knowledge guilty of the offence of murder of one Chikamso Mezuwuba, aged eight years, for rituals, to escape when he was to be detained for prosecution and, thereby, committed an offence punishable under Section 322 of  the Criminal Code Cap 37 Vol.II Laws of Rivers State of Nigeria, 1999.

The second charge stated: “That you, Johnbosco Okoroeze, on the same date and place in the aforesaid magisterial district, did conspire with a suspect, Ifeanyi Maxwell Dike, and allowed him to escape from prosecution  to prevent and defeat the course of justice and, thereby, committed an offence punishable under Section 126 (1) of the Criminal Code, Cap. 37, Vol.II, Laws of Rivers State of Nigeria, 1999.”

However, when the case came up for mention, the charges against him were not read and the plea was not taken as the first count was a capital offence, which attracts, at least, life imprisonment.

Chief Magistrate Sokari Andrew-Jaja, said the accused was facing charges for assisting a suspect to escape from custody and committed an offence,  which, on conviction, attracts life imprisonment.

Andrew-Jaja also said the former Inspector was accused of perverting justice, stressing that any person found guilty of the offence would serve seven years in prison.

The chief magistrate, however,  declined to listen and determine the first count due to lack of jurisdiction. But he said he had the legal standing to entertain and determine the second charge.

He, therefore,  told the court registrar to remit the case file to the Director of Public Prosecutions for legal advice and urged the counsel in the matter to file their addresses on whether bail should be granted to the suspect or not.

He adjourned the case till September 14, 2017, for the adoption of bail application and the DPPs’ legal report.

The suspect now at large had allegedly defiled, killed and mutilated vital parts of Chikamso Mezuwuba.

Dike was arrested at about 1:30 am on Saturday, August 19, 2017,  by a vigilance group in Eliozu area of Port Harcourt,  while on his way to dispose of the remains of the victim.

After the suspect was paraded at the SCIID  the same Saturday and statements obtained from him, he escaped from police custody and has since not been re-arrested.  (The Sun)

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Man Who Killed 8-year-old Girl Escapes From Police Custody Due To Power Outage

 Manwhokilled8-yr-oldgirl

Chukwudi Akasike,  Port Harcourt

THERE was confusion in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital, on Monday when members of the public learnt that Ifeanyi Dike, the man who allegedly raped, killed and removed vital organs of an eight-year-old girl, Victory Chikamso, had escaped from the police custody.

The father of the victim, Dr Ernest Nmezuwuba, who was at the State Criminal Investigation Department when the suspected murderer and ritual killer escaped from police custody, said Dike took advantage of the darkness within the SCID’s premises to escape.

Nmezuwuba, who spoke during a Port Harcourt-based radio’s programme, added that the suspect was able to escape because one of the policemen on duty on Saturday night identified as Johnbosco had unlocked the handcuffs for Dike to write his statement.

The father of the deceased explained that Johnbosco did not handcuff the suspect after he (Dike) finished writing his statement, adding that the suspect fled while he was about to be taken into the cell.

Nmezuwuba said, “We were there with the suspect in handcuffs. When we got to the state CID, there was no light in the entire State CID. I wrote my statement with a candle; imagine a whole state CID (without light). Then Johnbosco removed the handcuffs from the suspect’s hands for him (suspect) to write his statement.

“At a point, the boy (Dike) said he was thirsty and Johnbosco said I should buy pure water for him and I asked him (‘John; are you crazy? Is something wrong with you? Why would you ask me to buy water for a person that killed my daughter? Why would I buy water for a ritualist?’ And I told Johnbosco that it was none of my business.

“Some policemen were at the gate with guns while we were at the charge room writing statement. After we finished writing our statements, Johnbosco called the IPO to go and put the suspect in the cell. The suspect was not handcuffed at that time.

“They did not walk up to a pole when I heard hold amhold am; he has escaped. Whether he jumped the fence or not, I cannot say because the entire place was dark; it was between 7.30 and 8 pm (Saturday night). I now told Johnbosco that you know what you are doing.

“They (policemen) came out with torchlight and checked under the cars parked there. Then I saw the DCP, I mean the Deputy Commissioner of Police and he said; what nonsense is this? He then asked after Johnbosco and he was told he (John Bosco) was inside. The DCP then said that they should handcuff both his hands and legs.”

Nmezuwuba expressed disappointment in the police, accusing them of playing a game with a heinous crime against humanity, even as he vowed that he would never allow it to be swept under the carpet.

He said, “My brother, I cannot understand this country; this must be a planned game and I must fight it to the end. They have to provide that suspect. The Rivers State Police must provide him while Johnbosco should remain in detention.

“This incident has proven the kind of country we are living. What is going to happen in this particular matter; honestly speaking, heaven will hear it. The whole world will hear it.”

On his relationship with Dike, he said, “The boy (suspect) is related to me; we are from the same village. He killed my daughter inside his room. Ifeanyi Dike’s landlord is my in-law and also his own in-law. The landlord was arrested and the same day, they released him (landlord).  The name of the landlord is Pius Nwoko.”

Dike, who had allegedly defiled, killed and removed the vital organs of eight-year-old Chikamso, was caught by a local vigilante, who immediately handed him over to the police on Saturday.

However, the state Commissioner of Police, Mr Zaki Ahmed, who was visibly sad and angry over the development, explained that the suspect escaped under the cover of the night and promised that the police would soon arrest him.

Describing the incident as an individual negligence, Ahmed stressed that the police had deployed human and material resources towards ensuring that the suspect was apprehended.

The CP said, “What I am saying is that it was an individual negligence that caused it. The escape happened in the presence of the complainant; that is the parent of the girl. The boy (suspect) escaped under the cover of the night.

“But we are making every effort, every move and by the grace of the Almighty God, within a short time, he will be arrested. We are not relenting. We know that this is a serious problem; it can happen to anybody.

“We are not relenting and by the grace of God, we will get him arrested. It is too bad it happened, but it is one of those things. Sometimes, things can happen this way.

“We have moved a lot of resources; both human and material resources, to ensure that the culprit is arrested. We call on the people to confide in us if they have any useful information. I will act on it.”  (Punchng.com)

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BREAKING: Charley Boy, Sahara Reporters’ Editor, Sowore, Join Protest

UPDATE: Charly Boy, Sowore joins protest

Despite the pull out of hip-hop musician, Innocent Idibia, known as Tuface from the One Voice Nigeria protest against the federal government, various groups took to the streets in Lagos and Abuja on Monday.

‘We must begin to ask questions like we are doing now. We must not allow ourselves be intimidated into silence.’

‘One Voice! I Stand With Nigeria.
Bad leadership is a problem of today. Bad followers – a problem of today and tomorrow!’

Protest 3

The conveners of the protest, Coalition of young Nigerians promoting good governance and citizen engagement, tweeted: “It is not about where you are from or your religion. We are first Nigerians before anything else that defines us!”

Protest 4

 

Protest

‘98% of Nigerians do not eat what we want. We can only eat what we see. For how long? This needs to stop.’

Protest 1

Protest 2

culled partly from  The Nation

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