Former Aviation minister, Femi Fani-Kayode has said Nigeria must apologize to Igbo for killing about three million people in the 30-month civil war with the defunct Republic of Biafra.
Fani-Kayode said it was the refusal to acknowledge the ethnic cleansing that was responsible for the country not recording any meaningful progress years after the war.
“We have not apologized to Igbo and we expect things to move in this country? You collected their property in the name of abandoned property. They came back to believe in one Nigeria and began establishing again in the North and West, and you say we shouldn’t talk about it?
“Just as they killed three million, how many of your youths have been killed as IPOB members? Are they not human beings? And they say you shouldn’t talk. As long as you don’t carry arms, go ahead and express your rights,” Fani-Kayode said.
Fani-Kayode who spoke at the eighth Zik lecture series held at the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, weekend, described it as the greatest genocide the African continent ever had.
Fani-Kayode said leaders of the country had failed to avoid those things that led to the war and the genocide and that the trauma still pervades the country.
He also queried a situation where all the security agencies, except one, are headed by northern Muslims.
The former minister disclosed that he was asked by the organizers to be civil in his speech, but submitted that only sincere acknowledgment of the issues in Nigeria could bring about solutions to the problems.
He said Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe represented the testimony of the fact that people could truly believe in one Nigeria, adding that the nation’s first president must be angry with present Nigeria.
He recalled that Dr. Azikiwe could have been the First Premier of the Western region but was edged out, a situation he described as a tragedy for the country.
He said the greatest undoing of the country was ignoring critical issues and injustices done to citizens and pretending as if nothing happened.
The former deputy governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and presidential candidate of the Young Progressives Party (YPP), Prof. Kingsley Moghalu, had expressed similar views recently at the second Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu memorial lecture in Anambra State.
Moghalu regretted that the Nigerian Government every year sends a delegation in commemoration of the Rwandan genocide but will not remember the millions of people killed during the Nigeria-Biafra war.