Biafra: Poor govt strategies inflamed renewed agitation — Rev. Kukah
The renewed clamour for the actualisation of Biafra Republic would not have arisen if the government had adopted sound strategies to address the issues, Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Sokoto, Most Rev Matthew Hassan Kukah, has said.
According to him, ''the so called movement for Biafra has gestated more as a result of the poor strategy that the government may have adopted in dealing with these issues.'
Bishop Kukah shared his thoughts in the 2016 edition of Truth Magazine, a publication of the Dominican Student Brothers, Ibadan.
Asked if the pro-Biafra Republic agitations are engineered by the economic and political failure of the government, he said: 'Nothing succumbs to mere mono-causality. Everything is always the result of many other isolated things that finally come together. Some times, it is more important to ask what may have provided the conditions. So, again, the so called movement for Biafra has gestated more as a result of the poor strategy that the government may have adopted in dealing with these issues.'
Fingering poverty as the primary cause of violence in the country, he said: ''Extremism in whatever form operates in an environment of weak government's presence, which tends to create a climate of corruption. This is why most of the violence often springs from the periphery of society where poverty exists. It is also the reasons why you hardly find violence expressed in places like Asokoro, Victoria Island or the GRAs where the big men and women live together surrounded by their wealth, power and privilege which enables them to live peacefully. Violence is bred by the fact that the poor are often fighting over water for example and other scarce commodities that the big men and women take for granted. Extremism thrives in the pools of poverty and destitution and its victims are often the foot soldiers.''
On whether he subscribes to the claim that most religious violence in Nigeria begin as political before degenerating, he said: 'It can start from anywhere, but the failure of politics does help and to the extent that politics is about the distribution of resources, where this is not done equitably, people are often predisposed to violence. So, political failure may be a necessary but not a sufficient condition.' - Vanguard.