Fidelity bank card banner Camano banner
Soyinka breaks silence, says BIAFRA (Igbos) SUFFERED GENOCIDE during civil war

By News Express on 16/10/2012

Views: 15,887

For weeks, many people have wondered where Nobel Laureate Prof. Wole Soyinka stands on the accusation of genocide against Igbos by the Nigerian Government during the 1967-70 civil war leveled by Prof. Chinua Achebe in his war memoir, There Was A Country.

Well, Soyinka (shown in photo) has finally spoken his mind and, interestingly, he agrees with Achebe that Biafrans, the bulk of whom were Igbos, were victims of genocide during the war. 

In an interview he granted Britain’s authoritative Telegraph, the Nobel Prize winner described Biafrans as “people who’d been abused, who’d undergone genocide, and who felt completely rejected by the rest of the community, and therefore decided to break away and form a nation of its own.”

In the interview published last Friday, the interviewer Peter Godwin asked: “Professor Soyinka, you’re not an ivory-tower kind of writer. You are not a stranger to danger, and in fact you’ve been imprisoned on at least two occasions, once in solitary confinement. Can you tell me what that was like?”

Soyinka’s reply: “Writing in certain environments carries with it an occupational risk. When I was imprisoned, without trial, it was as a result of a position I took as a citizen. Of course I used my weapon, which was writing, to express my disapproval of the (Biafran) civil war into which we were about to enter. These were people who’d been abused, who’d undergone genocide, and who felt completely rejected by the rest of the community, and therefore decided to break away and form a nation of its own. Unfortunately, the nature of my imprisonment meant that I couldn’t practise my trade because I was in solitary confinement for 22 months out of the 27, and I was deprived of writing material. So I had to somehow break through the barriers, smuggle in toilet paper, cigarette paper, scribble a few poems, pass messages outside. I was able to undertake exercises to make sure that I emerged from prison intact mentally.”

The interview, which centred of Soyinka’s speech delivered last week at the Hay Festival in Mexico, was entitled “If religion was taken away I’d be happy”. In it, Soyinka condemned religious militancy and declared that now is the time to tackle Boko Haram, the Islamic militants who have been fomenting trouble in Nigeria.

News Express recalls that Prof. Achebe in his war memoirs subtitled ‘A Personal History of Biafra’ accused wartime Head of State Gen. Yakubu Gown and his Vice-Chairman and Finance Minister, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, of carrying out genocide against Igbos. The claim has been generating a lot of controversy, with many Yoruba commentators accusing Achebe of twisting history.

Source News Express

Posted 17/10/2012 12:07:28 AM





You may also like...
Insecurity: IG reinforces Bayelsa Police Command

Chiwetel Ejiofor, David Oyelowo honoured for service to...

Trump signs US recognition of Israeli sovereignty over...

South Africa’s biggest cement maker considers merger, searches...

Chief Justice vows to weed out corrupt judicial...

Police raises alarm over resurgence of political thurggry...

APC postpones primary election in Ogun

Sanwo-Olu will engage retired medical personnel to improve...

Senatorial candidates accuse Kogi Gov. Bello of intimidation,...

Orji Kalu’s N3.2bn Fraud Trial: Abia Govt. House...

Port Harcourt agog as PDP holds National Convention...

Star actor jailed for killing antelope


Latest News New twist in COZA Pastor’s rape saga: Police invites Timi, Busola Dakolo over alleged falsehood Banditry: Angry villagers take corpse to Zamfara Government House I am ready to lay down my life for Nigeria’s recovery — Obi American firm hoists Nigerian flag to honour exceptional employee Ruga: BNYL asks Igbo, Ijaw, Efik in North to return home as CNG’s deadline approaches Cultists wear Obas’ regalia, Ondo monarchs allege Insecurity: FG begins consultations with traditional rulers Police kill four teenage robbers in Edo Anambra community dismisses armoury rumour, threatens court action US-led war looming with Iran 1 killed, 8 injured in Ogun petrol tanker fire Enyimba Economic City receives further boost as IFC signs agreement


Most Read NUDE PHOTO OF OMOTOLA JALADE-EKEINDE surfaces online (510,486 views) Nigerian female sex addict opens up, says ‘I like it with both men and women’ (431,702 views) Shameless Genevieve Nnaji exposes breasts in public (373,713 views) Finally named: The full list of friends of Nigerian female sex addict who prowled Facebook (316,878 views) OLUMBA OLUMBA OBU (the one who called himself God) IS DEAD (282,645 views) Igbo scholar disgraces Femi Fani-Kayode •Demolishes claims on Igbo/Yoruba history with facts and figures (247,317 views) Breaking News: POPULAR REVEREND CONVERTS TO ISLAM in Kaduna (Nigeria) (239,476 views) 10 cars more expensive than Jets (224,177 views) OBJ’s son reported dead in Lagos plane crash •Names of more victims emerge (221,361 views) My wasted years in Olumba Olumba Obu’s Evil Brotherhood (208,926 views) Lagos plane crash: Journalist releases victims’ names (188,487 views) THE FINAL DISGRACE: Igbo scholar unleashes more facts about Igbo/Yoruba history, finishes off Femi Fani-Kayode with second article (187,103 views)


NLNG Job Vacancy

CBN banner advert

UBA Wise Savers Promo


Categories Advertorials (3) African Press Organisation (81) Art & Literature (97) Business & Economy (4,358) Business Verdict (76) Columnists (1,075) Complaints & Requests (95) Enterprise & Opportunities (211) Entertainment (636) Features (780) Global Business Monitor (396) ICT Monitor (54) International (3,730) Interview (193) Live Commentary (30) Love Matters (164) Maggie's Blog (342) News (48,876) Opinion (1,293) Pidgin (17) Politics (11,173) Religion (1,051) Sports (2,106) Stock Watch (39) AMA & Al Jazeera Global Update






APO Group Partner




GOCOP Accredited Member

GOCOP Accredited member



Africa Media Agency and Al Jazeera