This Is Why I Support Biafra – Wole Soyinka

wole-soyinka

  •  In an interview with Al Jazeera, he also criticized the fact that history has been removed from schools
  • Professor Wole Soyinka also explains the importance of looking at Nigeria’s past

As he celebrates his 82nd birthday, there are many things we do not know about Nobel Laureate, Professor Wole Soyinka, here are some of them.

However, there is something we do know. He is Pro-Biafra. He recently explained why he supports the struggle of the Igbo people for Biafra.

Soyinka said the Igbo people have been so wronged that they have no choice than to consider opting out of Nigeria.

While speaking to Al Jazeera, yesterday, Thursday, July 14, he shed light on his support for Biafra agitators.

“I am very much pro-Biafra because I recognise that the Igbo have been wronged desperately. They have been brutalised in a way that justifies their feeling that they were not part of the nation.

Let me also say this, Biafrans are not entirely innocent in this affair. They were not, but the unleashing of such venom, such devastation on them as a people, was sufficient to justify their decision not to be part of the nation. I was pro-Biafran in the sense that I felt that they needed justice.”

While denying the accusations that he was a troublemaker, especially in the Biafran crisis, he also added:

“I grew up in certain circumstances being very conscious politically, in this very Abeokuta; my mother was involved in the politics, my aunt, Mrs. Funmilayo Ransome Kuti was a leader.

I grew up among political arguments on issues that concern humanity and I find that basically gravitated towards recognising the basic worth of human beings.  

Something I disagree when they call me a patriot because I don’t agitate on some certain entity called a nation; I agitate on humanity.”

He then went on to criticise the removal of History and teaching of the Biafran crisis in schools. “Officials do not want to confront their own history, especially the history in the making of which they feel uncomfortable but, if you do not confront your past, you are going to mess up your future.”

On Boko Haram and the breakup of Nigeria, he said ironically, Boko Haram might be part of the reasons Nigeria may stay together. Meanwhile, one strange thing about Wole Soyinka’s house apart from being located in a forest in Abeokuta, Ogun state is that he does not allow cars past a certain point.

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