Authored By Chima Onyekachi
<SUNBIGHT>~Opinion~Orie~27th June,2022 @14:30 WAT
Opinion – I will define Freedom as a state of wellbeing where or when an individual is able to exercise his human and fundamental freedoms without fear or force.
You may wonder if I am locked up in a prison or police cell but none is the truth.
Why do we always have to think that one needs to be locked up to talk about freedom? Surely, everyone will have different opinions to that question.
Indigenous Biafrans have always lamented about freedom, that is the independence of the Sovereign State of Biafra.
There are people that may not come to an understanding why Indigenous Biafrans steadfastly clamour for freedom or simply the right to self-determination.
It must be understood that the creation of the contraption named Nigeria by Frederick Lugard was forced.
An individual may be domiciled in his homeland but denied his freedom in such a way that he may not be allowed to exercise or be part of any activity or rites in the community.
Freedom entails the ability to be able to exercise whatever is deem or referred to as a franchise, right or privilege associated to the area domiciled by the individual.
Freedom could also be defined as an exemption from constraint or oppression or simply referred as Liberty.
I am an indigenous Biafran forced to be governed by an occupational government of Nigeria, which is in fact denying my freedom to self-government.
The denial of freedom caused the Biafran Genocide of 1967-70 which has deepened the mistrust against peoples of Biafra amongst Indigenous Arewa and Yoruba.
As an Indigenous Biafran, why is no international flight routed to my region where an international airport is located in Enugu and Rivers States.
As an Indigenous Biafran, ị cannot deliver my container loads of imported goods into my region where there are Seaports located at Onne, Calabar and Warri.
Is it not enough discrimination for Indigenous Biafrans to always route international flight to Lagos or Kano?
Is it not enough denial of freedom for my imported goods to be delivered to Lagos Seaport or the dry dock at Kaduna?
There are so many ways Indigenous Biafrans have been denied their freedom but the most horrifying is the denial of the the right to self-determination as recognized by international law and conventions.
I have wondered if it is because I am Black or an African? Of course not!
The people of Western Sahara are beneficiary of the same right to self-determination.
The Helsinki Conference 1975 declared “Within this framework the participating States will recognize and respect the freedom of the individual to profess and practise alone or in a community with others, religion or belief acting in accordance with the dictates of his own conscience.”
The same covenant constituted at Helsinki in 1975 declared also “The participating states will respect the equal rights of peoples and their right to self-determination acting at all times in conformity with the purposes and principles of the Charter of United Nations and with the relevant norms of international law, including those relating to territorial integrity of States.”
The core problem of the occupational Nigeria government is the inability to adhere or respect international laws and covenant which it is signatory.
President Muhammadu Buhari has often shown his disdain for Biafran freedom fighters or activists as they are always melted with extra judicial violence and killings.
The Nigerian Presidency prefers to be sympathetic to the Fulani Herdsmen and BokoHaram terrorists sects while proscribing Biafran activists as terrorists as he did the civil pro-Biafran group- IPOB.
International Human rights organisations, Amnesty International, in their November 2016 report confirmed that “International researched and documented evidence proved that demonstration and rallies by pro-Biafran activists were largely peaceful.”
The same human right report stated that “The Nigerian security forces led by the military embarked on a chilling campaign of extra-judicial executions and violence resulting in the death of at least 150 peaceful pro-Biafran protesters in the South-East of the country.
It is utter betrayal to note that in March 2016, President Muhammadu Buhari threw his weight behind the people of Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic, SADR, otherwise called Western Sahara stating that Nigeria would ensure the realization of their Self-determination and independence.
Why should Muhammadu Buhari assure the Special Envoy of SADR, Mohammed Abdeleze, on pursuing their right to self-determination but at the same time issued directives for the arrest and abduction of notable pro-Biafran activists such as Nnamdi Kanu, Benjamin Onwuka and others?
Freedom should never be designated by language, color or ethnicity but free for everyone.■
Please be informed that the view and expression of the author are personal and does not represent that of SUNBIGHT MEDIA.