Article by Chinua Achebe in today’s UK Guardian claiming that Nigeria is still haunted by the ghost of the Biafra-Nigeria civil war. Achebe makes a lot of claims, including:
*Nigerian troops and government were fighting a genocidal war against Igbos. He spoke of “the diabolical disregard for human life seen during the war” which was no”due to the northern military elite’s jihadist or genocidal obsession”.
*Yoruba leader Obafemi Awolowo advocated starving the Igbos and economically punishing them as the Yorubas were engaged in rivalry with the Igbos who were their economic competitors.
*The Nigerian government deliberately impoverished Igbos by decimating their bank accounts after the war, and banning the importation of items that were crucial to Igbo commerce.
*Igbo deaths outnumbered Nigerian deaths by 20:1. Igbo casualties were 2 million, while Nigerian casualties were 100,000.
*Igbos have not been reintegrated into Nigeria – contrary to the claims of the Nigerian government.
Is Achebe right? Are his claims misleading, accurate or only telling part of the story?