Apparently filled with rage over the identity crisis facing compatriots in Bakassi, former Abia state governor Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu Thursday blamed past Nigerian leaders for donating part of the country to Cameroun.
While maintaining that the crisis would not have come up if General Yakubu Gowon had not signed the Yaounde and Marouna Accord, he frowned at Chief Olusegun Obasanjo’s decision to settle for the decision of the International Court of Justice [ICJ].
Kalu said, “I am sure Gen. Gowon will be remorseful now. Bakassi was a ‘Christmas gift’ to Ahmadu Ahidjo for killing Biafra. Maybe, it did not occur to him at the time that Biafra would come back to Nigeria. However, Chief Obasanjo turned out to be the real Santa Claus when he paved way for the Cameroonians to claim the Territory through the ICJ. Generosity is not one of the attributes of some of these past leaders. How they became givers of our common land continues to tear my insides out.”
The ex-governor wondered why Bakassi could be so shared when other Nations would go to war to defend their land and even far flung territories.
“Look at Britain. It took 24 days to subdue Argentina over the Falklands\Malvinas on June 2, 1982.In that war, Prince Andrew was deeply involved, all in the bid to defend less than 2,500 Brits who constituted 97 percent of the population. Do not forget that those Islands are nowhere near the United Kingdom. In Africa, Chadian forces fought back when Libya invaded Uranium rich Aouzou strip in the late 1970s.It is a shame that Nigeria lost territories without losing a war,” Kalu lamented.
He singled out former President Shehu Shagari for roaring like a lion even with no known military background.
“Alhaji Shagari remains a hero. In 1981, he sent Nigerian troops to Bakassi to maintain our territorial integrity. In 1982, he moved up north to check the Chadians. I guess at that time, General Muhammadu Buhari was in charge of military operations. I also remember one young Air force pilot, Jibril Alade Yusuf who died in that skirmish. His dad Air Marshall Nurieni Yusuf later rose to the position of Chief-of-Air staff,” Kalu added.