This is the News Analysis segment of the Voice of Biafra International (VOBI) broadcasts
For October 8th, 2005
You have heard the news; now, the analysis…
Is there justice for the Igbo and other Biafrans in Nigeria today? No! Is Nigeria listening to the collective cry of the Igbo and other Biafrans asking to be treated with some iota of justice—the same just treatment taken for granted and claimed as a right by other ethnic nations living in Nigeria today? No. Has the World not heard the loud and continuous wailing of the Igbo and other Biafrans about the constant injustice meted out to them by Nigeria, injustice which Nigeria no longer even bothers to camouflage but has been proclaiming so brazenly in outrageous public policies with the force of an immediate edict? We cannot answer for the World—not today. So, when the Igbo and other Biafrans finally mount their collective response to way-past unbearable injustice selectively meted out to them by Nigeria, any Nigerian who pretends surprise can only answer to the damnation of his or her own conscience; a World that would only then feign prior ignorance would only be indicting itself for collusion and for hypocrisy.
Last week, the Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) banned with immediate effect the business of importation of automobile spare parts, a business that is almost entirely wholly dominated by the Igbo and other Biafrans. By one stroke of the pen, this policy brings to immediate ruination thousands of Igbo and Biafran business men and women’s lives, and by extensions, the lives of millions of Igbo who depend on them for sustenance and succor as family. That the Federal Government of Nigeria is vividly aware of who the victims of this policy would be is borne out by the newspaper reports of the prepared and well-rehearsed excuses and justifications tendered by its lackey, the “Information and National Orientation Minister”, Mr. Frank Nweke, chosen to do its dirty job in mockery because he is Igbo, since the Minister’s portfolio is neither Trade nor Commerce.
The cool-headed analysis of FGN’s announcement of this policy and its response on challenge by the Media, as recorded in the article, “FG bans Tokunbo Spare Parts” reported by Lere Ojedokun in Daily Champion of Friday, September 30 2005, should not lead anyone to underestimate the depth of traumatic response and anguish of all Igbo and other Biafrans to this yet another direct blow to us by Nigeria. Nor should the mockery and irony (or, is it intimidation?) be lost on anyone, that under the subheading, “[FG] To buy 15 War Planes” in the same article, Nigeria approved the purchase of 15 new warplanes from foreign countries! In essence, Nigeria has just announced the destruction of the means and livelihood of millions of Igbo–Biafrans, and in the same breath, the purchase of 15 new war planes (with proceeds from Biafran Oil and taxes from Igbo-Biafrans!). How do you spell “PROVOCATION”?
According to the article, “The ban on used vehicle spare parts importation, according to government, was meant, among others things, to protect the country
from becoming a junkyard, ensure road safety and vehicle worthiness,
protect local industries as well as widen capacity of employees in
How does importing spare parts (which must be in demand) make Nigeria a junkyard? Isn’t it rather when vehicles are rendered immobile and useless because of lack of spare parts that such constitute an eyesore and litter? Road safety is ensured by, among other factors, good, well-maintained roads, adequate laws of vehicle inspection and driver and vehicle certification by well-trained officers, and the consistent and full implementation of those laws. These are areas where Nigeria has failed woefully, because the “officers” are only interested in extorting money from the vehicle drivers, either out of greed, or because they have not been paid for a long time. Driver-training and education are other factors. How is placing the blame on auto parts imports as FGN has done addressing these problems?
As for protecting local industries and “widening capacity of employees in the sector”, we ask: What local industries; what sector, and what is their product? How many “local industries” today are meeting their production quota, never mind meeting demand? In fact, how many still function? As an example, with all the money and resources pumped into them by the FGN, how did the local Oil Refineries do? Why does Nigeria love to play with English words, besides for the fact that the language is not Nigeria’s—how could Nigeria possibly understand the meaning of what they mouth in English?
"It's common knowledge that in the not-too-distant past you could go
somewhere, take your car for maintenance and you are told you need
this or that kind of spare parts. Then you procure it at great cost,
fix it but one or few days after they tell you it has gone bad…”—Nweke
This is a problem and issue of Warrantees and its enforcement, stupid!
“He [Nweke] said government was bothered about the absence of first-class maintenance system, as in past decades, where vehicles could be taken to garages and refurbished with genuine parts”…"Government is also of the view that there is a more recent development in the context of the fact that we used to have garages by Leventis, UTC, Peugeot, Leyland, BEWAC. Government thought it would be appropriate to try and find out what has gone wrong," he
So, in FGN’s botheration, without even attempting—never mind, seriously—to find answers to the problem, the first thing FGN does is to ban auto parts import. By the way, where does the FGN think parts used in those garages are coming from: are the parts not imported, too? How indicting!
“Mr. Nweke further stated that other recommendations of the committee,
upheld by council include the formulation of policies that could
encourage local production of spare parts within two years and the
privatisation of Nigerian Machine Tool (NMT) Factory, Osogbo, Osun
State...The company, when privatised, he stressed, would spearhead
development of machinery and equipment industry for local production
of spare parts while a National Metallurgical Laboratory will be
established to widen calibration services necessary for self-
sufficiency in local production.”
FGN was acting on “other recommendations,”…”upheld by council”, for what?
1) “Formulation” [only] of policies (so, no policy in place yet, right?); to do what? we ask. To
2) “Encourage” (how? What is an “’Encouragement’ policy”?) local production of spare parts; when?
3) in 2 years. FGN obviously has never heard of “a bird in hand [is] worth two in the bush,” a proverb of the English whose language Nigeria continues to desecrate. This (Obasanjo’s) administration has had 6 years: can you tell us any industry which the administration has built in 2, or even in all of its 6, years of operation? Rather, all it has done is supervise the disintegration of entire pre-existing infrastructure. Continuing: FGN is thus “formulating” to “encourage”:
4) “Privatization” of Nigeria Machine Tools (NMT) Factory. How many industries have been successfully privatized in Nigeria; how long did it take on the average, and how well have such industries performed post-privatization? If and when privatization is completed, (with emphasis on completed—FGN’s own emphasis), NMT would then NOT produce, for sure, anything; ONLY
5) “Spearhead” (how does an industry “spearhead”)?
6) Development of machinery and equipment-making (we are still not talking of auto parts production yet)…
7) Industry (finally):—another industry: so, NOT the NMT? How long will this take? It is this putative ghost-industry which has not even been seriously conceived of yet, which will at last perform
8) local production of spare parts; but, wait: NOT until after a
9) National Metallurgical Laboratory is established (yes, it has NOT been built yet!) to:
10) “Widen” calibration services, which must be in place; otherwise
11) “self-sufficiency in local production” will not be possible.
Folks: it takes even less than common sense to see that Nigeria just upped and banned the auto parts import business with immediate effect without any solid plan for an immediate and or interim alternative; instead, a convoluted and bogus “policy” which makes no sense at all (and has no chance of fulfilling its assume function) was presented in defense of the ban. It makes sense, though: the ban was designed to dispossess and punish the Igbo and other Biafrans—with immediate effect, leaving no recourse and no transition period, for maximum negative impact, since this business is practically the exclusive purview of the Igbo-Biafrans. To prove it, we offer quotes from the same article:
“…On the fate of Igbo spare parts dealers, the ministers said
government was concerned about them and has therefore, planned to
encourage them to form cooperative to enjoy economy of scale and have
access to easy bank loans and institutions dedicated to the promotion
of small and medium enterprises…
“His words: "we are aware, for instance, that there is a whole lot of
people in this country, especially in the South-Eastern part whose
livelihood depends on incomes from their trade in spare parts.
Government is also concerned about protecting this category of people.
“"However, government is of the view that they will be encouraged to
form cooperative associations so that they can leverage or
consolidate their businesses and enjoy economy of scale to help them
prosper, rather than go under," he said
“Briefing State House correspondents after the weekly Federal
Executive Council (FEC) meeting yesterday, Information and National
Orientation Minister, Mr. Frank Nweke Jnr. said decision to impose
the ban followed council's approval of the draft white paper on the
report of a presidential committee on spare parts production.
Let us reiterate the insult to the intelligence of the victimized—Igbo and other Biafrans—in this unimaginably inane rationalization by the FGN:
Nigeria / FGN, regarding the ban, was concerned about the Igbo and other Biafran auto parts import business men and women. So, FGN in its empathy, wisdom, just and compensatory action, largesse and “protection” of the disenfranchised Igbo and other Biafrans:
1) has plans (just plans; no prior consultation, no immediate discussions with the aggrieved; what is the plan and when will it become operational?)
2) to “encourage” the victims—Igbo and other Biafrans (it’s only an “encouragement,” folks—another “Encouragement-,” last time, it was “policy”; this time, “plan”),
3) to form “cooperative” (how, where, when, and what? How much will it cost, and how long will it take, who will manage it, how will it be managed?) in order to
4) “enjoy”? “economy of scale” (excuse us, but what “economy”? What “scale”? Weren’t the victims doing well with the economy of their business on their own, before the ban?); and this “gratification” is to be made possible through
5) “access to easy bank loans” (“access,” “easy,” “bank” and “loans” –all oxymorons in Nigeria; but for the Igbo or Biafran who has just lost everything because of this FGN’s edict, how can any of those terms even apply? Which bank? Which loans? Easy? Where? In the meantime, FGN is spending the “easy” money working on “Nigerian Machine Tool” (NMT) Factory, in Osogbo, Osun State (which is nowhere near Igboland); and “enjoying” setting up the “National Metallurgical Laboratory” which can safely be predicted to be anywhere but in Igbo-Biafraland).
6)…and institutions dedicated to the promotion of small and medium enterprises. (Tell us: where are those institutions and banks? Can you name one? What enterprises—give us an example of a small one, or a medium one, and tell us where either is located—inside or outside Igboland-Biafraland?); thusly, the Igbo and other Biafrans will be set up for the ultimate mockery by the FGN:
7) “…to help them [Igbo and other Biafrans] prosper, rather than go under…” (and, FGN/Nigeria sent an Igbo to deliver the message to you!)
In all your life, in all of history, in all your nightmares, could you ever have imagined anything such as this level of injustice and travesty befalling an entire nation in this the year 2005, in this the 21st Century, at the hands of Nigeria?
Save your disgust, anger and indignation. Quietly, firmly, with every moral fiber in your psyche and body, in the deepest recesses of your mind, muster the last measure of strength; RESOLVE that on September 30 2005, Nigeria finally crossed that line and pushed you past the point of return. That’s for those of you who were not already aware that that line had been breached. For those who had already had it with Nigeria earlier, redouble your resolve; renew your vow: NEVER AGAIN, NIGERIA! Chant our mantra: Biafra, Biafra, only Biafra!
For everyone: there is only one thing left to do now: Biafra actualization. That is the only thing to occupy your mind, attention and effort with, until we get there. Quietly or noisily, covertly or openly, silently or loudly, shyly or exuberantly, any way, every way: ADVANCE steadily to Biafra, without looking back. We will get there. God shall see us through the way to, and there in, Biafra.
Biafra alive! For, God makes it so
That’s the News Analysis for the week. Thank you
God bless and keep Biafra, and you, until our next broadcast. Voice of Biafra International (VOBI) broadcast continues (http://www.biafraland.com/vobi.htm), now with the summary of the News Analysis in Igbo language.
Ndi Biafra, ekele e o-o! Anyi e kelee unu.
Nke a wu akuko nke anyi na a kpo News Analysis si na Voice of Biafra International Radio, di na Washington DC, na ala America, na a bia ra unu na abali a.
Umu nne na umu nna anyi: ihe anyi ga a gwa unu na abali a e ghighi nne. Maka na oke iwe na e we anyi na ihi na Obasanjo na ndi otu ya na Nigeria, ha a kpasue la anyi nnukwu iwe ozo kwa, na o nweghi kwanu ihe anyi mere ha. Anyi na a tu atutu si na “Mmere gini? o wu ogu” E lee kwanu ihe anyi mere Obasanjo na Nigeria ka ha ga e ji were zie maa iwu nke si na ahia tokunbo nke wu ahia so-so-so Ndigbo ndi Biafra na a zu na ime Nigeria, ahia ihe e ji aruzi moto a na a kpo “auto parts,” na a kagbue la ya ozigbo ozigbo; na a gaghi azu zi ahia ahu ozo, site na ubochi ikpo-azu onwa September (30) na afo ya? Nde Igbo nde Biafra na a zu ahia ya jiri ya mere ndu ha, jiri ya na a kpata aku na ego i ji e mezi ezi na ulo ha, zuo umu aka ha; kedu kwanu ihe ha ga eme ugbua? Nkea a wughi kwanu mbu ka Obasanjo ma o wu ndi Nigeria mere ndi Igbo-ndi Biafra ihe di otua.
Anyi na a gwa unu: na ime obi unu na na ime mmuo unu, onye o wula duoro onwe ya isi si na o nweghi zi ihe ga e me kata ka ya noro na ime Nigeria—ma o wu na onwu ma o wu na ndu. Na otu aka ahu, kwee unu onwe unu na Chineke anyi nkwa na o wu so-o-so Biafra ka anyi ga na a chozi tutu anyi a ga rue ya, nweta ya wu Biafra; na anyi ga e me ya otu o wula anyi nwere ike i ji ga njem a, i nweta Biafra. Kwee onwe gi nkwa ya; kwee Chi gi nkwa ya.
Naani ihe a ka anyi na a rio unu na abali ya.
Biafra, ndu gi! Biafra, ndu gi!! Biafra, ndu gi!!!—na ndu anyi kwa. Maka Chineke nonyere la gi—nonyere kwa ra anyi!
Voice of Biafra International (VOBI) broadcast continues
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