By Emma Amaize
ASABA- EVEN in Kuje prison, people address the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, Nnamdi Kanu, as ‘His Excellency, President of Biafra,’ Charles Okah, an inmate in the same prison, who was nominated recently by two Biafra splinter groups as their new leader revealed yesterday.
Okah, in a statement, accepting his nomination by The Rebranded Indigenous People of Biafra (TRIPOB) and the Renegade Indigenous People of Biafra (RENIPOB), said “Humility comes before honour. Even in prison, not a few concerned persons, particularly Biafrans have argued that Nnamdi Kanu believes he is already the “President of Biafra” and goes about with an ‘entourage’ and is addressed as “His Excellency”.”
“That is a fact I have witnessed myself. This narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) was enough to drive away so many of his admirers, who have since flocked in droves and thereby swelled the teeming number of TRIPOB members,” he asserted.
As the new chief executive of TRIPOB, he declared: “I hereby issue executive order number one, which is that the planned ’surrender’ of the Biafran flag scheduled for January 15, 2017 is hereby cancelled. All preparations towards the ceremony must be put on hold with immediate effect.”
“The surrender of a people can only come from the inside. A man may surrender outwardly, but remain defiant inside. The spirit to be ‘free’ cannot be suppressed. We, as a people can only be bound by our mind and our fears,” he said.
Okah asserted: “My nomination by The Rebranded Indigenous People of Biafra (TRIPOB) and the Renegade Indigenous People of Biafra (RENIPOB) as their Leader was brought to my attention in Kuje Prison by my lawyer, Mr. Timipa Jenkins Okponipere, Esq.”
He advised hardworking professionals and other migrants from the Biafra region resident and doing business in the Diaspora not to be deceived by the antics saying: “Your numerous donations cannot bring about a secessionist “Biafra Republic”, but they can change the mindset of our people.”
“Your donations and financial support can also help to improve the standard of living of our people when they are channeled into training and loans. Anyone suggesting to you that they want to start a second civil war to ‘liberate’ us is a con artist. Even an Igbo President in Nigeria today will never seat to negotiate a break-up with anybody. A word is enough for the wise,” he said
He said his nomination as TRIPOB leader , indeed, came to him as a pleasant surprise, as he is an Ijaw –Biafran from Amassoma in Bayelsa state , but he decided to accept it because of its respect for the other tribes and indigenous peoples, who make up the rich and diverse ‘Biafra’ region.
He declared: “Biafra does not belong to a single tribe. It is erroneous therefore for any tribe to single themselves as owning Biafra and to say they have been marginalized.”
“This misconception is deceitful, ungrateful and wicked considering the giant strides my Igbo brothers and sisters continue to make in Nigeria today. From those who own tank farms as captains in the oil and gas sub-sector of the Nigerian economy, to those who have dominated the local movie industry (otherwise known as “Nollywood”), exporting their culture and language to all parts of the globe.
“It will only serve the interest of a few persons to deceive the majority of blind followers to start believing they are slaves in this land of opportunities though tongue and tribe may differ,” he said.
He stated: “Under my leadership, TRIPOB will help to change the misconception and instead, free our minds to know that the ‘Biafran’ can begin from the villages to the cities of our various states to make them attractive and at the same time, hold our public office holders to account for their stewardship; instead of blaming President Muhammadu Buhari for the ills which have befallen our society.”
“A lazy workman will want to blame his tools. Blaming the Directorate of Security Services (DSS) or the APC-led government for the emergence of factions in IPOB is an insult to the average Biafran, who thrives on courage and a mind of their own.
“Some of the women who left the women wing of IPOB did so because they could not understand why somebody would be shopping almost every day on the expensive Oxford street in London with proceeds of donations pouring in from donors around the world, who have been deceived that their money will help to ‘liberate’ Biafra, when a fraction of that money spent on shopping can upgrade the businesses of those women roasting corn and groundnut by the roadside in our beloved Biafra,” he said..
“Indeed, my administration shall commence by using donations received from donors to create jobs and upgrade existing small-scale entrepreneurs starting from the markets and
roadside from all across the Biafra region.
“For instance, under my leadership, the woman frying akara (bean cake) on the streets of Yenagoa, Port Harcourt, Uyo, Awka, Onitsha, Calabar, Okigwe, Owerri, Aba, Enugu, etc., will do so in style; complete with all the tools, training, exposure, apparel and standard of a modern fast food enterprise. She can only achieve this with our support,” he said.