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Civil War Post: Buhari and the Awolowo Six Million Reminder; as Lai Mohammed gloves for Twitter

Civil War Post: Buhari and the Awolowo Six Million Reminder; as Lai Mohammed gloves for Twitter
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Civil War Post: Twitter has removed a post by Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari threatening punishment for regional secessionists blamed for attacks on government buildings.

 

The move on Wednesday came as Buhari’s tweet, referring to a civil war in the southeastern Biafra region, violated the social media company’s abusive behaviour policy, leading to a 12-hour suspension of his account.

 

The two-and-a-half-year conflict started in 1967 and more than one million people died from fighting, disease and starvation.

Civil War Post: Buhari and the Awolowo Six Million Reminder; as Lai Mohammed gloves for Twitter

Buhari, who served in the army against the secessionists and was Nigeria’s military ruler in the 1980s, tweeted on Tuesday that many people misbehaving today were too young to remember the deaths and destruction from the civil war.

 

 


He made the remark after a meeting with officials from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), who reported to him attacks on the body’s facilities.

 

“Those of us in the fields for 30 months, who went through the war, will treat them in the language they understand,” he warned in the tweet that was taken down.

Civil War Post: Buhari and the Awolowo Six Million Reminder; as Lai Mohammed gloves for Twitter
Civil War Post: Buhari and the Awolowo Six Million Reminder; as Lai Mohammed gloves for Twitter

Nigeria has seen a spate of arson attacks on electoral offices and police stations in recent weeks, especially in the southeast. Officers have also been killed.

 

Authorities have blamed a banned separatist group, the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), and what police call its armed wing, the Eastern Security Network. The IPOB has repeatedly denied involvement.

 

Some social media users criticised Buhari’s tweet before it was removed, accusing him of targeting Igbo people from the largest ethnic group in the southeast. IPOB is influential in the region and its efforts to revive sentiments over Biafra have prompted a crackdown from security agencies in recent years.

 

Lai Mohammed calls for National Press Conference over Deleted Tweet

The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, on Wednesday, accused social media giant, Twitter, of double standards for deleting a controversial post by the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), on the Biafran war of 1967-1970 during which many lives were lost.

 

 


Mohammed was dismissive of Twitter’s action, saying Buhari had every right to express dismay at violence by a banned organisation.

 

“Twitter may have its own rules, it’s not the universal rule,” he told reporters. “If Mr president anywhere in the world feels very bad and concerned about a situation, he is free to express such views.”

 

The Nigeria’s information minister called Twitter’s move unfair, labelling it “double standards”.

 

“The mission of Twitter in Nigeria is very, very suspect. Has Twitter deleted the violent tweets that Nnamdi Kanu has been sending,” Mohammed wondered.

 

“When people were burning police stations and killing police officers during #ENDSARS, for Twitter it was about the right to protest. But when a similar thing happened on the Capitol, it was insurrection”, Mohammed said.

 

This is the first time a tweet from the president will be deleted.

 

How Twitter feels about Buhari’s Tweet

A Twitter spokesperson said the post “was in violation of the Twitter Rules. The account owner will be required to delete the violative Tweet and spend 12 hours with their account in read-only mode”. The statement gave no further details.

 

Mr Buhari’s Twitter account on Wednesday afternoon still noted that one tweet was “no longer available”.

 

 


However, the account had also re-tweeted a video from the president, along with the quote: “Whoever wants the destruction of the system will soon have the shock of their lives. We’ve given them enough time… we will treat them in the language they understand.”

 

Mr Buhari made no mention of any particular group in his tweet. But many people were angry on social media over the tone of the language used by the president, which they believed was much stronger than he had used in his condemnation of acts of banditry or attacks by Boko Haram militants in the north and felt he was referring to a particular region.

Civil War Post: Buhari and the Awolowo Six Million Reminder; as Lai Mohammed gloves for Twitter
Civil War Post: Buhari and the Awolowo Six Million Reminder; as Lai Mohammed gloves for Twitter

Twitter has a long and detailed list of material that should not be used in tweets, including abusive behaviour, harassment, discrimination and violent threats, with various levels of action for violating rules, including post removal and account suspension or deletion.

 

Former US President Donald Trump was probably the most high-profile figure to be suspended, over incitement of violence following attacks on the US Capitol in January.

 

The Nigerian Civil War, or Biafran War, was fought over an attempted breakaway by the state of Biafra. The 30-month conflict led to the defeat of the secessionist forces with millions, including killed, mostly civilians through starvation.

 

Whose Idea and why 20 Pounds no matter what

Late Chief Obafemi Awolowo, “he instituted an economic blockade of Biafra, which made it nearly impossible for food and other forms of aid to reach an already impoverished region. His assertion that ‘All is fair in war, and starvation is one of the weapons of war’, lends credence to the notion that he deliberately sanctioned a policy he knew would cause deadly suffering. The war ended seven months after the implementation of the blockade.

 

“As its most influential thought leader, Awolowo’s primary concern was for the West. He consistently sued for a peaceful resolution to the political stalemate in the nation and urged the federal government to honour the agreements of the Aburi Conference, which Ojukwu’s East insisted was the minimum requirement for its reabsorption into Nigeria.

 

 


“Though Awolowo expressed a desire for the country to remain united, he also declared in a May 1967 speech to Western leaders of thought his willingness to follow the East’s example should it be allowed to secede: ‘If the Eastern Region is allowed by acts of omission or commission to secede from or opt out of Nigeria, then the Western Region and Lagos must also stay out of the Federation’. In addition, Awolowo was staunchly resistant to a military resolution to the impasse, insisting that a war against the East would be ‘an unholy crusade, for which it would be most unjustifiable to shed a drop of Nigerian blood.’

 

“Two days after this speech, Awolowo led a government delegation to the East to urge Ojukwu to reconsider his stand on secession and embrace dialogue. This last-ditch attempt to avoid conflict failed, with Ojukwu reiterating his resolve to dissociate his region from Nigeria. In hindsight, it appeared that Ojukwu might have given more weight to Awolowo’s perceived solidarity with the Eastern cause than the conciliatory talks, and he assumed it was unlikely that the federal government—which would really now be the North—was prepared to fight a war against both East and West. On 30 May 1967, the Eastern Region of Nigeria officially seceded and became the Republic of Biafra.

Civil War Post: Buhari and the Awolowo Six Million Reminder; as Lai Mohammed gloves for Twitter
Civil War Post: Buhari and the Awolowo Six Million Reminder; as Lai Mohammed gloves for Twitter

A report by the Sunday Times four days before Biafra’s total surrender captures the situation succinctly: ‘People are now choosing in large numbers to risk massacre at federal hands rather than die slowly from starvation in a shrinking enclave.’

 

‘It is not far-fetched then to suggest that Biafra’s capitulation had more to do with the collapse of the Biafran economy—instigated by Awolowo’s policies—than with a successful military campaign by the Nigerian military. Awolowo’s prudent management of Nigeria’s war economy bears mentioning as Nigeria did not borrow any money from the international community to prosecute the protracted war.’ Igbo money was used for the execution and revival of Nigeria after.

 

“To many Igbos, Awolowo is considered persona non grata for dealing a fatal blow to their dreams of political independence and helping to perpetuate the northern hegemony he had previously fought vehemently. But to apologists of Nigeria’s ‘non-negotiable unity’, he did what was required to protect the territorial integrity of the nation. At the end of the war, Awolowo approved a 20-pound policy where all re-integrated Biafrans, regardless of how much they had saved in banks across Nigeria prior to the war, were only entitled to an ex-gratia payment of 20 pounds, further exacerbating the economic woes of a region badly reeling from the losses of war.

 

“So pervasive was this view of Awolowo that he would feel compelled to grant a town hall interview addressing these issues 15 years after the end of the civil war. The 20-pound policy, he claimed, was instituted because Biafran pounds could not be expected to convert into Nigerian pounds and because the government could not accurately ascertain how much money Igbos had saved in bank accounts prior to the war. In that interview, he also claimed to have bypassed the federal executive council in ensuring that revenue—‘millions of pounds’—that had accrued to the East Central State during the war was remitted.

 

 


Awolowo resigned in 1971 to protest the government’s continuation of military rule, and in 1975, following the overthrow of the Gowon government, issued a press release questioning the country’s military spending.”

–  REPUBLICAN

 

“For history sake, many have been made to believe its just or about 1 million adults and children but in actual its over six million”, an old anonymous said.

 

Buhari’s statement on Southeast laughable – Ex-lawmaker, Valentine Ayika

Valentine Ayika, a former member of the House of Representatives from Anambra State has said that President Muhammadu Buhari’s statement threatening Southeast people was laughable and insensitive.

 

According to the former lawmaker, “First of all, the statement for me is laughable, it doesn’t smack of what is expected of a president of a country.

 

“What did he mean by ‘criminals have been given enough time? Actions speak louder than voice. The law is there. If people break the law, they should be brought to book. So, do you need to tell somebody that, ‘I have given you enough time’? Can a criminal change? A thief will always go back to the den because that is what he is used to, so there is really nothing like—it really doesn’t make any sense talking about the people who have been given enough time to change or not to change.

 

“The only possible sensible thing in that statement is saying the criminals will meet their waterloo.. that is what we want to hear, and it is not really about talking about it, it is about bringing the culprits to book. Arresting and prosecuting the criminals. It is about making them go through the provisions and prescriptions of the law.

 

“It is not all about talking and talking, we have had so much talk but no action.

 

 


Speaking on the effect of deploying the military to the region, he said, ” When the police that is responsible for internal security is overwhelmed, you can deploy the military to assist you. Of course, when you are deploying the military to assist them, you must be sure that the military you are deploying is properly instructed on what to do, and how to properly deal with civilians. A military man is trained to shoot, to kill. So you have to be sure that they are in the proper frame of mind to deal with the civilians.

 

“I have seen cases where you will have to park your vehicle and hands up to walk across the checkpoints. What have they done wrong? You can’t be a prisoner in your own country.”

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