SOLUTIONS TO THE BIAFRAN PROBLEM
Most pundits discuss the injustices meted out to the Biafrans but no remedies. This will be a brief attempt to offer solutions. The professionals can go into the specifics of the implementation.
Problem: Biafra is not synonymous with Igbo. Twenty Pounds (£20) for whatever amount you had in the bank before the war. The Jews are still being compensated for their World War II losses.
Solution: Create a special fund only accessible to people from the old Biafran territory. Offer low interest loans to “Biafrans” from this fund.
Problem: The manufactured narrative that Igbos planned and executed the 1966 coup d’état.
Solution: Write history books debunking the idea and make those books required reading in secondary schools.
Problem: Destruction of Infrastructure.
Solution: Refurbish and reopen the ports of Port Harcourt and Bonny. Build a standard gauge railway line from Calabar to Uyo, to Aba, to Onitsha, to Benin, to Ore, to Ibadan, and to Lagos. Upgrade the Port Harcourt, Calabar, and Enugu Airports to world-class, international standards.
Problem: Quota System of Education.
Solution: Knowledge is not allocated on a quota basis. If it is, Africa is not getting its fair share of Nobel Prizes. Ensure that every qualified “Biafran” is assured a place in Nigeria’s tertiary institutions. Nigeria is cheating itself by preferring candidates with a 100 JAMB score over those with 300 JAMB score. You start building from the ground up, not top down.
Problem: National Character
Solution: Scrap the National Character Principle in our constitution and replace it with a merit-based system. Persons chosen on merit would select their subordinates on merit, and the results will be meritorious.
Problem: Indiscriminate Killing of Biafrans that continues until today.
Solution: Enact laws making killing, on the basis of religion, tribe, or hate, punishable by mandatory life imprisonment without parole. The same punishment awaits facilitators and concealers of such crimes.
Problem: Destruction of “Biafran” property on the flimsiest of excuses.
Solution: Compensate the victims from the Federal Government allocation to the state(s) involved.
Problem: Genocide/Holocaust/Pogrom of Biafrans.
Asaba – Compensate the families of the survivors.
Prof. Kalu Ezera, Colonel Tim Onwuatuegwu, and others – Compensate survivors and name edifices in their names.
Problem: 1966 killing of “Biafrans”
Solution: Scrap the so-called Democracy Day and replace it with a Memorial Day to remember the victims of 1966 and the war that ensued.
Solution: Establish a Truth Commission. Before the principals die off, they should give an unbiased account of their role in the civil war. General Yakubu Gowon will do Nigerians a lot of truth by writing a truthful memoir instead of praying. President Muhammadu Buhari, who has been exposed as an unrepentant “Biafran” hatist, should apologize and ask for “Biafran” forgiveness.
Solution: Make each zone a semi-autonomous region with foreign affairs and monetary policy being exclusive federal preserves.
Solution: If you live continuously in any part of Nigeria for 6 months or more, that is your home. You can contest for any election in that locale.
Let the healing begin!