Thursday, 19 January 2017

Invest and invest and invest in Biafra


Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe

Forty-seven years into phase-IV of the Igbo genocide and literally on the eve of the epochal breakthrough of the Biafra freedom movement (http://re-thinkingafrica.blogspot.co.uk/2017/01/blog-post_99.html), it could sound perplexing to adjudge the next step of the Igbo path of action as beginning anew”. But I am reminded of that towering injunction by poet-philosopher Aimé Césaire who deftly charges that the way forward, in the aftermath of such a cataclysmic history, is the “quest to reconquer something, our name (sic), our country … ourselves”.

Who is the investor?

For the Igbo, the long march to re-take Biafra, re-claim Biafra, their homeland, for themselves and their children and grandchildren and theirs, and consequently end the genocide of 50 years has indeed begun: invest and invest and invest in Biafra... You don’t have to wait for the formal assumption in office of the restoration-of-independence Biafra government in Enuugwu to embark on the immediate task to invest in and for freedom.The specifics, vitality and range abound for the choices of the investor, inventor, scientist, plumber, innovator, thinker, carpenter, analyst, surgeon, builder, artist, composer, mechanic, estate developer, researcher, chef, sportsperson, manufacturer, trader, architect, nurse, entertainer, banker, distributor, painter, teacher, insurer, lawyer, fisherperson, musician, engineer, trucker, producer, sculptor, hotelier, physician, draughtsperson, director, writer, decorator, academic … All conceivable cutting-edge  fields in ideas, science and technology are here to be worked at – researched on, understood, adapted, reworked, invented, manufactured, distributed… Biafra will resume the quest towards establishing the high-powered global-oriented economic enterprise interrupted catastrophically by the genocide since Sunday 29 May 1966.

Igbo entrepreneurs are therefore thrust with the challenge to turn Biafra into the workshop that serves its people and competes actively with the rest of the world. The world will surely respond accordingly by establishing crisscrossing routes of communication to Biafra to enhance cooperation and exchange. The investment and transformational opportunities emplaced within the population of 50 million throughout the 200-mile north-south stretch of highlands and escarpments and forestlands and grasslands and valleys and waterfalls and lakes and assorted reserves of mineralogical and agricultural resources from the Nsukka plateau (north) to Azumini, Igwe Nga/Opobo, Igwe Ocha/Port Harcourt, Umu Ubani/Bonny, Umuebelengwu and Ahoada of the Igbo Atlantic (south) and the 100 mile-panhandle from Ugwuta, Onicha and Anioma west to the Abakaleke/Ehugbo/Bende/Arochukwu east are breathtakingly immense for the imaginative and industrious investor, elaborated further in this 18 August 2015 essay: (http://re-thinkingafrica.blogspot.co.uk/2015/08/there-is-presently-visionary.html).

Disinvest from Nigeria

To complement this historic drive, Igbo in the diaspora in Nigeria must embark on the disinvestment of their businesses in Lagos, Abuja and elsewhere in that “country”. Igbo must also begin to boycott all goods and services made in and for Lagos. The Lagos brand is henceforth toxic: “Don’t buy ‘Made in Lagos’”. 

The frequently commuting Igbo should cancel all ticket reservations on flights in and out of Lagos and bookings in Lagos hotels. They should use other airports en route to Biafra such as Enuugwu, Owere, Asaba, Igwe Ocha and those in Calabar and Uyo. New airports should be built to cope with the fast changing situation. A Lagos boycott will only soon force airlines to route directly to hitherto un-used facilities (with the necessary upgrades of course!) such as Enuugwu and Owere, for instance, as ultimately, as everyone knows, successful business orients to the client’s preferences. 

There is no reason why the overwhelming majority of Igbo travellers should not fly straight to their Biafran destinations in a few months as the boycott of Lagos intensifies. No more Lagos business conferences: don’t plan one there; don’t attend one there – just skip it as “unimportant”! Finally, the Igbo importers and exporters who command a dominant space in the Lagos district ports’ activities should move their businesses elsewhere: Igwe Ocha, Calabar, Warri, Sapele, Burutu and, soon, Igbo entrepreneurs and engineers will add to these capacities new outlays in Azumini, Onicha and elsewhere and the bridging up of the Aba-Igwe Ocha conurbation to further diversify enterprise and opportunities (http://re-thinkingafrica.blogspot.co.uk/2015/08/there-is-presently-visionary.html).

Breakthrough

Igbo resistance to the genocide is arguably the most defining struggle currently underway in Africa. The breakthrough of the Biafra freedom movement, very much on the cards, is of major importance for Biafrans and the future direction of Africa. This development cannot be exaggerated.
(Billy Harper Quintet, “Dance, Eternal Spirits, Dance!” [personnel: Harper, tenor saxophone; Virgil Jones, trumpet;  Joe Bonner, piano; David Friesen, bass; Malcolm Pinson, drums; recorded: Barclay Studios, Paris, France, 21/22 July 1975])
Twitter @HerbertEkweEkwe

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