Thunder Road to Biafra            Letters from

Somewhere in Biafra

to Philip Emeagwali

Biafran refugees fleeing from Owerri, October 1968.







Memorable Quote

"I have seen things in Biafra this week which no man should have to see. Sights to search the heart and sicken the conscience I have seen children roasted alive, young girls torn in two by shrapnel, pregnant women eviscerated, and old men blown to fragments, I have seen these things and I have seen their cause: high-flying Russian Ilyushin jets operated by Federal Nigeria, dropping their bombs on civilian centres throughout Biafra ...

At Onitsha - the 300 strong congregation of the Apostolic Church decided to stay on while others fled and to pray for deliverance. Col. [Murtala] Mohammed's Second Division found them in the church, dragged them out, tied their hands behind their backs and executed them."

["Nightmare in Biafra," Sunday Times (London, 4/26/68, p.12), by a war correspondent]


Biafra, Republic of


The Columbia Encyclopedia, Fifth Edition Copyright ©1993.



secessionist state of W Africa, in existence from May 30, 1967, to Jan. 15, 1970. At the outset Biafra comprised, roughly, the East-Central, South-Eastern, and Rivers states of the Federation of Nigeria, where the Igbo people predominated. The country, which took its name from the Bight of Biafra (an arm of the Atlantic Ocean), was established by Igbos who felt they could not develop-or even survive-within Nigeria. In Sept., 1966, numerous Igbos had been killed in N Nigeria, where they had migrated in order to engage in commerce. The secessionist state was led by Lt. Col. Chukumeka Odumegwu Ojukwu and included some non-Igbo persons. Biafra's original capital was Enugu; Aba, Umuahia, and Owerri served successively as provisional capitals after Enugu was captured (Oct., 1967) by Nigerian forces. Seeking to maintain national unity, Nigeria imposed economic sanctions on Biafra from the start of the secession, and fighting between Nigeria and Biafra broke out in July, 1967. After initial Biafran advances, Nigeria attacked Biafra by air, land, and sea and gradually reduced the territory under its control. The breakaway state had insufficient resources at the start of the war-it was a net importer of food and had little industry-and depended heavily on its control of petroleum fields for funds to make purchases abroad. It lost the oil fields in the war, and more than one million of its civilian population are thought to have died as a result of severe malnutrition. At the time of its surrender on Jan. 15, 1970, Biafra was greatly reduced in size, its inhabitants were starving, and its leader, Ojukwu, had fled the country. During its existence Biafra was recognized by only five nations, although other countries gave moral or material support. Civilian groups were organized in a number of countries to publicize the case for Biafra and to raise funds for the secessionist state.








Memorable Quote

“For record purposes, however, let me state fearlessly that I saw hundreds of unarmed civilians being shot at sight in Benin City when Federal troops arrived to liberate the city from rebel [Biafran]soldiers....

There appeared to be a fleeting period of lunacy in which Midwesterners gladly identified their Igbo compatriots to be shot down by Federal [Nigerian] troops."

[Giwa Amu, the former Solicitor-General of Midwestern Nigeria, Sunday Observer, March 16, 1983













I was a year perhaps when my father left to fight in the war..just a baby yet I still feel the aftermath 34 years later because my father never returned...I class myself as a war victim and my soul is lost and will remain lost until the wonderful reunion between my father and me happens... whether here in this life or in heaven...Thank you for your work and pictures they were my first link to the reality...Maybe one on the photos of those brave soldiers going to war had my father in who knows.. god moves in mysterious ways....All i know is I am proud of my Nigerian heritage....God bless all those who died in the war may they rest in peace....

Yours Sincerely,
United Kingdom

January 9, 2000




My Nigerian spirit...


I am inspired by you.


I am a Nigerian, sort of. I was a two-year-old when my parents toted our family to the missionary field. Dad was a medical missionary, a surgeon who saved many lives. We moved 18 different times in six years. We finally left in 1967 when the war was in progress. I still remember that Dad had to put my play gun in the attic because he was afraid for my life.


That was 30 years ago. Will I ever return? Everyone tells me it is a very sad place. Everyone is poor except for the leaders. Tell me why has nothing ever changed there?


I can tell you my heart is sad, too. I am a white woman that was once the minority in my home country of Nigeria. I was what they called the "peeled one." I am lost in a space of yearning and I've accepted that I will never know that my homeland will ever recover.


Anyway, I salute you.


Sherie Ellington Frederick



Dear Philip Emeagwali:

I mistakenly came across your site that documents aspects of the Biafran War with the use of photographs.

First, I want to commend you for a job well done. I especially enjoyed going through your remarkable photos, in spite of the fact that some of them recapture a gory sadness that resulted from the War. However, and forgive me if I'm mistaken, but I also noticed that you provide no meaningful reference to a notable figure who stands as, perhaps, the hero, albeit unsung hero, of the War. As of 1959 when Nigeria had only 30/31 military officers, Major-General Philip Efiong, then a captain, was higher in rank than the two central adversaries of the War--Generals Gowon and Ojukwu. In reality, and without the unfortunate political and social events that led to the War, at the onset of the War he was still technically higher than both men, at least militarily. Ultimately his role, and the one that stands out, was sacrificial, and saved the lives of hundreds, even thousands. It was a role that has caused him unimaginable suffering as well as thrust him into an unfair and marginalized position where he remains largely unacknowledged, even spurned. Major-General Efiong's role at the end of the War was not only life-threatening and, therefore, courageous, but was also phenomenal because it made history that has yet to be fully recognized. At no point, after all, has a majority ethnic group accepted the leadership of of a minority man or woman, except toward the end of the War when General Ojukwu took his cowardly flight and left General Efiong to clean up his mess. And this, at a time when the likes of the great Zik of Africa and other such Ibo heavyweights could not be looked up to by Ibos. They had only one person to look up to--Major-General Philip Efiong--and he didn't let them down but put his life on the line for their sake.

I don't believe you deliberately excluded Major-General Efiong from your site, but I hope you can understand why I had no choice but to notice the fact of his conspicuous absence.

Thank you for your time and I wish you the best in your present and future intellectual pursuits.

Philip Effiong, Jr.
(son of General Philip Effiong)

Dear Philip Effiong:


Within the circles I was in, Ndi Igbo praised General Effiong for the courage he displayed at the end of the civil war. The information posted on my Biafra home page is incomplete and unbalanced. With your permission, I will post your response on that page. I will present a more balanced info when I write my biography.

Please visit me again.

Philip Emeagwali

BTW, what is the correct spelling "Effiong" or "Efiong?"







Thank you for your response to my mail and for your exceptional humility and sincerity. I am inclined to believe that you deserve the praises that have been bestowed on you. You have my permission to post my response on your page.

"Effiong" is actually an anglicized version of the name. My father still uses "Efiong." For the most part I use "Effiong" because most of my certificates have the name spelt that way. It is usually others--journalists, etc.--who spell the name with double "f." Members of the family generally spell the name with one "f." Since most writings, books, etc., have it spelt with double "f," you may actually stick to this spelling as people are more used to it. Thank you for your time and best wishes.

Philip, Jr.

Hello Phillips,

Going through your site and digesting all the information therein; your world had been obviously influenced by the events of "1968 Nigeria," I thought. I fought back emotion as reality permitted me to but, that is the strength of the collective unconscious we all share. I was only nine at the inception of hostilities. I wonder however if Effiong Jr. feels unimportant in the annals of history as written by events, not by you I might add. His Father obviously shared his opinion I hopelessly would think, for that would be most unfortunate. One ought to remind Effiong Jr. that only true cowards make surrendering speeches. Ojukwu could not have chosen a better person. God bless.

Leo 16 Nov 2001



Dear Leo (I assume this is your name):

I write in reference to a response you gave to my opinion on the Civil War, which is pasted on Phillip Emeagwali's website. Although your response was written since 16 Nov 2001, I am only just coming across it. May I, therefore, respond to it?

I am particularly concerned about your statement, which reads:

"I wonder however if EffiongJr. feels unimportant in the annals of history as written by events, not by you I might add. His Father obviously shared his opinion I hopelessly would think, for that would be most unfortunate. One ought to remind EffiongJr. that only true cowards make surrendering speeches. Ojukwu could not have chosen a better person. God bless."

Although not very clear, I tried to make sense of your statement. Be advised that my intention is to enter into open, rational, and objective conversation, and not to deteriorate into a petty exchange based on sentiments and, in your case, nothing more than ethnic bias. If you must respond to me, make some effort to rise above emotional leanings. This should help to develop your mind. Now, to respond to more directly to your attack (because that’s what it was).

First, I do not feel "unimportant" about anything, and my essay makes no such indication. I am not seeking cheap attention but merely to address the truth, and I will continue to do so, regardless of what people like you say or think! My claim to importance is based on the things I have achieved in my life (thank God) and not a War. If I have to list what those achievements are, ask me. I am not ashamed to share them. I do not seek importance by way of any war, and I would appreciate it if you do not make such baseless suggestions that lack any substance to them.

Second, you would do well to stop imagining things and then writing them down. My opinions are mine, and mine alone. Your claim that my father obviously shares them is unfounded, annoying, insulting, and absolutely false. Please don’t accuse my father falsely. You don’t know anything about him or his opinions.

Third, and this is the big one. You state, “only true cowards make surrendering speeches.” This is true on some levels, but at the same time this is where you most display your ignorance and small-mindedness. Surrendering can be an act of cowardice, but it can also be heroic based on context. Within the context of the Civil war, my father did what the people wanted him to do, simple! He didn’t act in isolation. At the time, the War was virtually over but simply needed an official stamp to confirm what was obvious. Have you ever done any research on the War? Have you read any book about it? If you haven’t, you need to. My dad did exactly what the people wanted and that is why in the past 33 years they (the Ibo people mainly) have honored and continue to honor him. Locally he has been honored and internationally he has been honored. How many cowards do you know that are honored so greatly and sincerely? I guess you expected my dad to single-handedly pick up a gun (which was virtually non-existent in Biafra at the time) and go on a worthless and eccentric battle against the Federal troops.

You indicate, rather boldly and sarcastically, that your tribal hero, Ojukwu, handpicked the best coward in my father. Wouldn’t it have been easier for this hero to stay back and perform the “cowardly” act rather than run off to the Ivory Coast? If the act was that cowardly and there was nothing to fear, why didn’t he stay back? If it wasn’t dangerous and no risks were involved, then why didn’t he perform the surrender himself? The fact is (and it doesn’t surprise me that you don’t know) that surrendering was not as simplistic, as easy, and as safe as you make it sound. Do you know that there were threats on the lives of some of those who went to Dodan Barracks for the signing? You probably don’t because your facts are not straight on this matter. Do you know that my father was thrown in detention after signing the surrender? Do you know that his passport was seized? Do you know that he has not had a job-military or civilian-since after the War? Are these situations that a coward puts himself in? If surrendering is as easy as you make it sound, then why didn’t Hitler surrender rather than take his own life? Surrendering, in other words does not always imply safety and freedom as you make it sound, and your hero, Ojukwu, knew this to be true, that is why he absconded to the Ivory Coast and abandoned people like you who know sing eulogies in honor of him. And yet, you dare to call my father a coward. I choose not to be shocked by your ingratitude.

Be aware, and this is for your own good, that my father, like some of his other contemporaries, had been honored before the War and beyond the context of the War. My father served in the UN Peace Keeping Force in the Congo well before the War, and was paid tribute for it. Before the War he served in Kaduna where attempts were made on his life during the second coup. Does his life as a professional soldier and the risks he faced suggest cowardice? Is this the type of life a coward chooses to live?

Wasn’t your father alive during the War? Wasn’t he a man? What role did he play, especially since it was his own people who were bearing the brunt of the Federal assault? Why didn’t he fight? Why didn’t he do the heroic things that you claim my father didn’t do?

I don’t blame you for insulting my father. It does say something about your upbringing. But, trust me, you really don’t count. Yours is a lonesome, ill-informed, nutty voice in some obscure desert where brains haven’t yet been invented. As I’ve stated, my father has been generously honored nationally and internationally, so you are really quite irrelevant and dispensable. Trust me. Nonetheless, can I request from you, whoever you are, not to insult my father again. He is almost 80 and need not be insulted by a bigot who hates to accept or deal with the truth. He has suffered enormously in his life-I know because I am his son-and so, if you have nothing good to say about him, as ungrateful as you are, then please don’t say anything about him.

If you plan to engage in meaningful, fact-based, unbiased, unsentimental, and non-insulting conversation, by all means respond to me. If not, please don’t respond to me. The last thing I want to do is sink down to your degenerate level of perception and thinking.

Enough said.

Philip U. Effiong (Abuja, Nigeria, April 8 2003,







Though a dark, dreadful and eerie aspect of our history, I could not but enjoy and appreciate looking through the pictoral presentation of the Nigerian Civil War! When the war broke out in 1967, I was 13. I was captivated by the vividness of trauma of war captured in those monumental pictures. Interestingly, I was also musing over the conspicuous absence of General Phillip Effiong's picture when I ran into the feedback provided by his son, Dr. Phillip Effiong. I could not but agree with him that General Effiong's role in Biafran struggle deserves a place in the annal of Nigerian history. Please, go back to the archives. I am sure, there will be pictures of this noble Nigerian that could best reflect his contribution to the definition of what we call Nigeria today. Thanks for doing what you are doing, Dr. Emeagwali. Peace! Michael O. A.

Michael O.A. 27 Nov 2001

I wish to add to what must already be a long string of commendations. Philip. All Biafrans (and that is not just Igbo people) owe you a tremendous debt for your personal achievements and your online archive of Biafran history. I also endorse the views of Philip Effiong jr. His father's General Philip Effiong's role in
Biafra appears to be under-acknowledged. Something needs to be done not just literally but by other equally meaningful and practical gestures. You, Sir can set the ball rolling. You do not have to wait for any prompt.


C.I. London U.K., 16 Oct 2002






I feel greatly fulfilled reading this part of the gory history of the Biafran state. Honestly, it is the very first time i'm doing that, and am so happy. I have always heard the phrase, 'on aburi we stand', but have hardly been able to make out the build up. Its also my first time visiting this site. I'll love to say, WELLDONE.

If i have a thing to say, it is that those principles on which Ojukwu stood in 1966, has remained the crux of todays quest for national reconstruction. What i tend to believe is, perhaps, given the tension in the country at that time, the military would be unable to provide a fruitful solution to the crisis. But, we should be asking ourselves, what lessons have we learned from that whole experience? the answer is not far-fetched; 'we have learned nothing'. The crisis that have engulfed Nigeria today is worse off compared to 1966. What else would anybody say, for a country still reeling in the pangs of poverty and starvation, shamefully in the midst of plenty; whose youth cannot see a future with it, but would prefer a low life in london, or slavery in South Africa.

It must be placed on record that no economy or society anywhere in the world is developed by foriegners. Nigeria must be developed by Nigerians, and nobody but Nigerians. I believe in the fact everybody will be accountable for his actions, first to posterity, and finally to Almighty God. Sadly, enough, God is usually forgiven in His infinite mercies, but posterity does not.


Justus Ekeigwe, 12/28/2002
London, England


A Walking Encyclopaedia

Dear Dr. Emeagwali,

I went through your site and came across the webpage that carried pictures and news articles on Biafra/Nigeria civil war. It was quite revealing as it was educative.

I am amazed that an individual like you could be an embodiment of a mass of knowledge - a walking encyclopaedia. You are a blessing to the black race and a gift to humanity. Keep up your good works and God bless you.

Chinedu Anekwe,
December 28, 2002
Enugu, Nigeria.



I am really symphatizing with Biafran

Hello Sir,

Happy new year! How's everything I hope is well in Jesus name Amen.

I am from Plateau State, Jos, staying at Rayfield. But when I read the history of Biafran and what happened, the people behind the killings of Igbo's i.e, the Nigerian Army then, the Commander in Chief of Federal Republic of Nigeria, then I shed tears and cry deep into my heart for how human beings are so wicked without pity. Meanwhile, I pray that God will forgive those people behind the killings. I also look at the whole pictures of what happened then, the killings of people, how they where sufferings, how soldiers were rapping small girls & married women I cried to God to forgive Nigeria.

Finally, I pray that nothing would happen in Nigeria again like that. And may God choose a good leader to us with God fearings. I also thank those that restored peace to Nigeria and the Igbo's land.

Thank you so much.
Alamba D. Dung.
January 7, 2003

NB: My regard to all Nigerians and I'll always keep in touch. I am just 22yrs old now.




I just read an interesting account of the Biafran struggle above your web address.

I worked in Nigeria from Sept 30, 1965 until the summer of 1968, the latter times in Biafra.

it is tragic that Biafra could not prevail. I drove my Land Rover to Kaduna during the horrible murder of Igbo civilians in the streets to try to rescue the relatives of my workers. It was unspeakable.

Peter D.
February 5, 2003












Biafran National Flag[MSOffice8] 












bianca odumegwu ojukwu philip emeagwali dale emeagwali takoma park maryland august 10 2001[MSOffice10] 


Stage Adaptation of the Biafran War


l have just finished an adaptation of the french revolution, and visited your site on the biafran war. l want do a stage adaptation of the biafran civil war which i intend to take around the Eastern part of Nigeria and then other state capitals of Nigeria. l would appreciate contacts with bodies and organisations from you. lm an lgbo and presently a graduate student of the Theatre Arts department of the university of lbadan. looking forward to hearing from you

Charles Ogu
ogucharles @
February 7, 2003

Dear Sir

l have written before on the above, looking for institutional link up in realizing the Biafran experience on the stage to relive the experience for majority of the people who didnt witness it. Dr. Stanley Macebuh of the Nigerian Presidency delivered an alumni lecture at lbadan university in that regards. That has actually fired my interest again. Please reply to confirm whether you got my mail.

Charles Ogu
February 14, 2003

Congratulatory Message as one of the Biafran Scientist

To our Lovely Brother, Philip Emeagwali,

Congratulations to you as one of the greatest Biafran Scientist as of today; God bless you and your family in general AMen. Sir, since the formal president of America Bill Clinton came to Nigeria during his time, through his speeches that he Clinton made us to know that there is a Biafra Scientist like you, since then i have been thinking of how to reach you. But i thank God that as of today i have totally reach you through our e-mail address.

Please Sir our scientist i welcomed you. First of all i will not fail to introduce my name as Pastor Williams Okafor from Umuezukwe Awo-omamma Imo State Our east L.G.A.

But before April runs out my introduction must totally change as Williams from United State of Biafra (U.S.B) I am a member of (MASSOB)and here we do hear about our Biafran's Brother leaving Overseas; how they are supporting the movement both financial expert of it. God bless you all Amen. Please Sir, there is important thing i need all Biafrans Scientist to do as of now as we are waiting to hear from U.N. for the annocement of our new birth Biafra. I will be happy if all Biafran scientist can come together as association putting heads together for the betterment of new born Biafra. Because i believe that through our scientist we must also belong to the super-power. I understand that Biafra belong to the commonwealth of Isrealie nation with Southern sudan. Let all Biafran Jews wherever they are we must fish them out becuase some of them don't know where they come from. We must know that many of our Biafrans citizens are around the world such as Norway Republic, This my brothers don't even know where they come from, but they are Biafrans. I believe that through your effort we the Biafrans must have their setlight.

Sir, there is one thing i need to share from you. I believe you can do a favour for me. As of now i have a computer and also intercellular phone wireless phone how can i use the intercellular phone with the computer to get connected to the Internet without running on a Mast or via V-SAT because here in Nigeria, it is only the rich people that set internet office with Mast or V-SAT. Why i am asking this question is that, the company that sold the Intercelullar phone to me told me that i can be able to have access to the Internet through the phone using a set of computer but spending about some thousand for the phone with hope that through it internet will be connected there. At last nobody can feed me how to connect intercellular phone with set of computer to get internet message.

Sir, why i am interested in asking you these question is that you are the Father of Internet, Bill Gate of Africa. And i know why you remains in America because that our promise land is yet to come (i.e.Biafra Land). Why i am interested is because i love information and also i need to know what is happening within an office, within CNN et.c

Sir i lovely enjoy your interview in one of our Weekend News, I so pick interest on you because you are one of my Biafran man. Please, Sir help me to get solution to my problem which i complain to you, May the almighty God bless you. Amen, Looking forward for your reply.

Thanks from
Williams Okafor
Biafran Citizen
Long-Live Chukwura Emeagwali!
Long-Live United State of
February 24, 2003
deumudike @



Dear Mr Chukwura Emeagwali,

I bought the week end news paper and came across a column which read ''BIAFRAN SCIENTIST SHAKES THE WORLD'' after reading this column,I felt elated being a Nigerian and knowing that i have a Nigerian brother that has made a land mark achievement by designing the internet,makes me a proud Nigerian, irrespective of what the world termed Nigeria

My name is Momodu Oshiokpekhai Emmanuel.... [stuff deleted]
February 28, 2003



Dear Emeagwali,

you have tried by puting your experence of that horrible period the igbos went through into history by recording it on your web site. Now one can go through it all but what I regrate very much is the inability of Biafra to survive.Maybe they would have made a great Nation. Maybe as thier flag portray, She would have been one Nation in the mist of the darkness that ingross us as black people to show a gleemer of light that will point the way to our immacipation. Our ability to jion the race developed world.

keep it up

Chibuike Agbugba
April 4, 2003




Biafran War Film Footage

Dear Dr. Brown and/or colleagues,

I am a film researcher working on an upcoming documentary about Africa that requires several seconds of footage from the Biafran War. I recently came across the website "After the War Was Over" and made a preliminary phone call to the number listed at the end with your name.

Since you were not there, I spoke with your boss, a very helpful gentleman from Biafra who indicated that you or others may be able to make some inquiries and give me leads on where some footage could be found. Would this be possible? I would appreciate your help very much.

I found the website very moving and insightful. Please convey my thanks to all involved.

Elizabeth Thomas
April 10, 2003
visitliz @



General Phillip Effiong and the Biafran War

This piece is in response to the comments by Phillip Effiong, Jr. I agree with him that his father (General Phillip Effiong) was a hero of the Biafran war. However, I think he contradicts himself somewhat when in one breath he laments that General Effiong "remains largely unacknowledged, even spurned", and in another he admits that Igbos "have honored and continue to honor him. Locally he has been honored and internationally he has been honored". If the latter has been the case, what then is he complaining of?

I think Phillip needs to understand that marginalization and disdain have been the fate of all the other "Biafran" actors who distinguished themselves in the war, including the heroic field commanders and the ingenious inventors. The Nigerian state still habors an aversion to these people, except for a few lucky civilians like MT Mbu who have been fully reabsorbed into Nigeria's political economy. For obvious reasons, even Igbos despite their admiration of the Biafran heroes have not found the political courage to honor or immortalize them - no streets, no monuments, no institutions have been named after any of them in any Igbo town or city. The best effort so far was the controversial pan-Igbo honorary chieftaincy title bestowed on Emeka Odimegwu Ojukwu on his return from exile in the early 1980s. So, if General Effiong has been unacknowledged and spurned, he is not alone in that situation.

One might also add that the General was a victim of unflattering circumstances that were not his making, but which overshadowed his legitimate claim to heroism in the war. The first was that he was effectively Biafra's Vice President, and very few VPs in history ever had the spotlight beamed on them for good. The second was that fate thrust on him the prudent but unenviable role of taking the decision and signing the instrument of surrender. History rarely dwells on such men, much less smile on them. How easily and in what manner does anyone remember the man who signed the instrument of surrender for the Nazis or in any other modern war? This is one of the hard, unfair realities of life that make this world a challenging place to live in.

By the way, I think Philip's lengthy reaction to Leo's rash comment on General Effiong was unnecessary, and the petty and abusive manner he chose put him in the same category as Leo, and may have done more damage to his dad's reputation. My impression of General Phillip Effiong is that of a fine gentleman who would not blow his own trumpet in search of honor. Unfortunately, the evidences Phillip chose to cite to establish his dad's heroism (service in a UN peacekeeping force, life threatening situation in Kaduna, signing Biafra's instrument of surrender, postwar detention by the Federal Government, and unemployment since after the war) hardly come across as extraordinary acts of heroism for any solder, much less for a war time General.

I did sense some bitterness against Ojukwu and Igbos in Phillip's response to Leo. I am not surprised because having lived in Nigeria since after the war and studied the pattern of political alliances among its peoples, I know that the sentiments that ran through his comments reflect the mindset of a vast majority of the non-Igbo speaking Easterners. I am disturbed only because Phillip sounded like he is very close to his dad, and one would naturally suspect that his views on Ojukwu, the Biafran project and Igbos have benefited from privileged discussions with the General. I hope this is not the case.

I am glad to note, however, that General Effiong his still living. I think the world would like to know his views in retrospect. So much has been written and said about the war by people on both sides, a lot of which is either self-serving, revisionist or full of myths and legends. Thankfully Emeagwali's efforts, though quite limited in scope, is insightful especially because of its verbatim transcription of the Aburi deliberations (from the very horses' mouths) which is key to understanding the root causes of the war. General Effiong's reticence about the war has not been helpful. I believe he and others in the inner caucus of the Biafran side (all of whom have been much maligned) owe it to themselves, to the entire victims of the war and to history to write honest memoirs explaining the circumstances and facts that made the war imperative, that sustained the war effort for three long years, and that led to the eventual vanquish of Biafra. Ojukwu's 'Because I Am Involved' does not seem to satisfy this need, and I hope he will fulfill his promise of a much more detailed book. With most of the Biafran actors already over 70 years, time is running out on them and they will have to work extra hard to discharge this vital responsibility. I think Phillip should prevail on his dad on this issue, rather than blame Emeagwali and other secondary sources for neglicting the good old General in their commendable, albeit much constrained, efforts at telling the story of the war.

I believe it is important for us Nigerians to continue to discuss the Biafran project and subsequent war in an objective manner. It is a major landmark of our national history beneath which is buried much insight into and maybe solutions to the problems that stiffle our aspiration for nationhood and development.

Clem Ugorji,
Lagos, Nigeria
May 5, 2003



My views on the Emeagwali site

I write in reference to opinions I expressed on this site regarding my father, Obong Philip Efiong, and his role in the Nigerian-Biafran War. My initial views were sent directly to the owner of this site, Mr. Emeagwali, who, with my permission, decided to paste them on his site. They were not intended as an expression of hatred or as an attack on any group of people, just as the criticism of Nazi Germany does not necessarily imply hatred for all Germans. They were also not intended to stir up ethnic sentiments and biases.

Subsequently, there have been a number of responses to my views, most of which have been kind and diplomatic, but some of which have been critically vicious, confrontational, and ethnically charged. The results have been a series of exchanges, a number of which I now consider unhealthy, misleading, and quite irrelevant to intellectual or social growth. As such, I have requested that the views I initially expressed be deleted from this site.

I will admit that as Obong Efiong’s son my views and reactions were sometimes laced with emotions that one should expect of a son who has witnessed his father go through untold hardships. In other words, I have sometimes overreacted. Overreacting in this way has resulted in my occasional use of a rhetoric that has been impertinent and belligerent. I regret where I have used words in this manner, especially in my communication with people like Mr. Ugorji and Leo, and would like to express my unconditional apologies to them.

I hold nothing against anyone or any group of people and, under the circumstances, would express the same views if Chief Ojukwu were a Yoruba man or a Ghanaian. I especially hold nothing against the Ibos who I have fervently spoken for on such issues as the Abandoned Property controversy. I have also unequivocally defended their right to peacefully settle and set up commercial ventures in any part of the country without hindrance. Above all, I am part Ibo and married to an Ibo woman.

Most importantly, my father, who is almost 80, is still alive and continues to remain healthy. He also continues to receive tremendous support from people of all backgrounds and from various regions of the world. It would, however, be delusional of me to expect 100% support for him. After all, even Jesus the Christ (for Christians) was crucified by the people that one would have least expected to carry out the act.

In the end, I will stand by the truth and hope that the rest of us also put aside our personal idiosyncrasies and stand by the truth too. This way, the truth will prevail, as it certainly should.

Thank you.

Philip U. Effiong
May 7, 2003



Hi Phillip [Effiong],

I have just read the three mails you sent to me. Your third mail has overtaken whatever comments I would have liked to make in response to the first two, and I am glad that I read all three at the same time. Your withdrawal of the first two letters has been noted and your apologies are accepted.

Nevertheless, I would like to state that my comments on the subject were objective, well-intentioned and non-insulting as a second, less impassioned reading would reveal. I still believe that the only way we can heal the emotional and psychological injuries inflicted by the civil war (which we tend to ignore or deny) would be to engage in objective and tolerant discussion of the issues. This is also necessary if we are to avoid the mistakes of the past.

I am not an ethnic bigot; and my upbringing, education and exposure have guaranteed that I cannot become one. Incidentally, we both share something in common: my wife is Ibibio and I am a full-blooded Igbo. I am very attached to my parents-in-law, and I spent the weekend before last Easter at Nnung Udoe, as I always do when the opportunity arises. So you see, I have a vested interest in promoting understanding and reconciliation among the different peoples of the former South Eastern Region, who because of disunity and recriminations arising mostly from the Biafran project have become a popular prey in Nigeria's political economy.

You strike me as one from whom I can learn some things about the civil war, because of your privileged position as the son of one of its key actors. Maybe, in spite of everything, we can both find a basis for sustained interaction on the issue. I would be glad if you would accept this hand of fellowship.

Thanks and regards.

Clem Ugorji
May 9, 2003



Rejoinder to Philip Effiong, jr

Dear Philip Emeagwali,

I bomped into your web archive on the BIafran-Nigerian war today for the first time. It is quite interesting and provides a lot information. I could not but be caught by a sudden upsurge of emotions. The fact is that I was born during this war and seeing those pictures (especially that of an emaciated mother with her baby) gives me an idea of what I must have looked like during that sad period.

I also read with interest the observation sent in by Philip Effiong, Jr. I totally agree with him that Major Gen Philip Effiong deserves a place in the annals of Nigeria which is yet to be accorded to him. And not only that, he also deserves a huge apology and compensation from both the powers that be in Nigeria and the people of Nigeria in general, for having neglected him for too long.

I further read with a greater interest (and may be, some sense of amusement) the exchange between Effiong Jr and Leo. I think both of them got a little bit emotional in their exchange. But who will blame the younger Effiong for getting emotional, after such an unwarranted attack and provocation by Leo? I would like to remind Leo that the mark of an educated mind is the ability to face facts and data, and to rise above personal (or tribal - clanish) sentiments.

But at the same, I would like to make a final comment. This is with regard to a statement by Effiong Jr. In his observation he said: "At no point, after all, has a majority ethnic group accepted the leadership of of a minority man or woman, except toward the end of the War when General Ojukwu took his cowardly flight and left General Efiong to clean up his mess." Effiong Jr. got it wrong here, because from the very inception of the Biafran as independent nation the elder Effiong was the second in command, and that fact is not contested, it was actually accepted and accords with the principles that governed Ojukwu's administration of the Eastern Region, even before the declaration of Biafra, namely participation of every ethnic group within the region, in governance. Secondly, I would disagree with Effiong Jr that Ojukwu's flight into exile is to be termed "cowardly". I should think the flight a leader of warring people at time when their military strength has been completely weakened is necessary in order that a peaceful negotiation for surrender may take place, because as long he is there he remains a prime target for the enemy army, and his presence symbolizes the continued struggle. I should think the leaders and advisers on the Biafran part realized this when advised Ojukwu to leave and then asked his secund in command to announce surrender. Gen Effiong was very brave indeed and couragiuos. He did not fail his people. He rose up to what was expected of him as the second in command, in the absence of the Head of State, and he did it gallantly, just as he did had always gallantly served both before and during the war, in his other assignments. But Ojukwu was no less couragious. It requires a couragious leader to realise that the "game is over". Think of ojukwu's words on 11th Jan 1970 as he fled Biafra: "The task of leader of a people at war is to be responsive to the plight of his people and to determine what level of sacrifice can be accepted." Clearly it would appear that there is indication in this that he perceived his leaving as necessary in order to ensure the survival of the Biafrans as a people, even if not as an independent nation. It takes a couragious to swallow personal pride for the sake of your people, and move into exile.

I would once more want to thank you, Philip Effiong Jr, for raising these issues, and I think those issues should be brought to the attention of the wider Nigerian public. A true democracy cannot be said to exist in Nigeria yet, as long as such issues as these are still left unaddressed.

Rev. Fr. Emeka Okite,
Oriental institute,
Oxford University.

-- Rev Fr Emeka Okite,
Oriental Institute,
Pusey Lane,
UNITED KINGDOM). Alternative email:
May 23, 2003


Odumegwu Ojukwu[MSOffice19] 

Thank you for the web site that presented so much information on the Nigerian/Biafran situation. I was a teacher near
Port Harcourt when secession occurred, and, after being evacuated, I returned a year later to work with the Red Cross in Lagos, then in the Elele area, serving clinics in Owerri, Ahoada, etc.. I was particularly interested to see Adekunle's comments about the Red Cross and other relief agencies as he did not like us being there, but was forced to do so, by public opinion and by Gowon. I have written a book about my experiences, War Stories: A Memoir of Nigeria and Biafra. I am hoping to return to Nigeria in the near future to lecture on the situation, from my perspective. I find, as do any of you who are old enough to remember the war, that young Nigerians are eager to learn more about the overall situation. This web site is very helpful in that regard.

John Sherman
shermco @
June 3, 2003





Hi dr Donita.

Let me introduce to you. My name is Mario Aydar. I am a musician. I live in Sao Paulo, Brazil and for a long time in my live I got the nickname of "Biafra" because I was so skinny and the kids - always the kids - used to associate my body shape with the pictures of people from Nigeria by that time. They don't call me Biafra anymore, although I'm not fat, but I kept a kind of nice feeling about that name. Today I've searched on my computer for Biafra to know more about the war, the place and the people and it was a gift for me to know about Philip.

I am not part of the scientific community, so that was the first time I've heard about him and I got really impressed. I started reading his notes about the civil war, saw the sad pictures and red his biography. What a nice guy. I don't know why am I writing. Maybe because I felt so happy to know that the people from the place that somehow in the past used to be my name where fighting and showing us how to do it. That really moved me.

Sorry for my bad English, say hi to Philip and THANKS.

July 18, 2003


Odumegwu Ojukwu[MSOffice21] 


Nigeria we hail thee

I am always very glad to visit this site. While the civil war was a tragic event for the nation called Nigeria, the death of our citizens Biafrans or Nigerians should for ever never to be forgotten.

But I must let you know that your site has cleverly failed to educate other Nigerians that some Western Nigerians fought on behalf of the Biafrans. Additionally, Lots of westerners were forced to join the federal army that fought in the east. I personally witnessed Westerners being rounded up in Ibadan and forced to become warriors.

I know for a fact that that if the Biafrans had not gotten to Ore, the opposition in the west to the war would have remain solid. It's also not a secret that abandon properties problem was never an issue in the west. The fact that a large population of Easterners reside in the west today is not an accident, it is a testimony to our hospitality and our beileve in United Nigeria.

Why did you not mention the role that Banjo and other westerners played on the Biafran side ?

Why did not educate young Igbos and other Nigerians about what happened to people like Soyinka during the war? I am sure that that the bitterness that some of us westerners experienced from our fellow Eastern Nigerians in the USA who wrongly believed that the west betrayed them will not disappear, but surely providing some data as to the contribution of other ethnic groups within Nigeria may assist some in understanding that the war was a tragic event in the history of our nation I want to let you know that I supervised an Ibo man who almost cost me my job because of his ignorance and bitterness because I am a western Nigerian. But God is good, I also gained a good friend from the east who was not as myopic as he was during the same period. I have been reading and researching the war to gain better insight to his madness because of my experience. I hope other Nigerians will never cross a bitter individual such as this man.

It is my hope that Nigerians at home and abroad will eventually recognize that we are proud people with long history of peaceful co-existence. We have the facts and history on our side. We are the chosen ones destined to lead Africa and the black race. But we cannot reach the promised land if we continue to ignore the contributions that we've all made to our nation good or bad, large or small.

Finally, you are a gem that all Nigerians should cherish. You are one of those few Nigerians that in the USA that I can honestly call a patriot.

Tunde Agboola
August 6, 2003






You represent a large number of emotionally-scarred survivors and that is immeasurably appreciated by we, the post-war Biafrans who long for truthful documentation of these events. Driving by the veterans on the Onitsha highway since I was 13, I had always stopped to give some naira or the other to these unsung heroes. You do immensely more by just portraying their struggle.

As my dad who was a surgeon throughout the war refuses to even hear mention of the war, your poignant insight has been of great help. Simultaneously, your accomplishments as a scientist leave me in awe and give me great hope for us black people who in a wider perspective, have struggled so hard and so long. I hope you can instill the same level of hope in younger, less-educated blacks to go the way of science, and not money!


With deep respect,

Ifeanyi Udekwu

Klas Ifeanyi Ikechebelu Udekwu
Department of Microbiology
Institute of Cell and Molecular Biology
Biomedical Center Box 596
Uppsala University

September 20, 2003


Thanks a million for promoting the Biafran cause. We, Ndigbo, are really grateful, and your name has been written in gold in our hearts.


October 11, 2003







Hello Phillip Emeagwali,


My good brother, the reason i am sending you this email is to let you know that there is work for you to do, which i think you have not been doing, but before telling you the work i will thank God for what He has been doing in your life. We igbos in nigeria is proud of you ,many of us started to hear about you when the former american president visited nigeria ie Clinton, he talked good of you and say that you are the father of internet phillip i read one of the nigerians weekly magazine which i granted an interview which you said how you and your parent suffared during nigerian biafran war but thank God that you survived the war but should know that over two million igbos lost their live during the war and the injustice that coursed the war has double as of today, if you have visited igbo land for the past fifteen years you will see what am telling you how the nigerian government has been punishing the igbos. My brother, the work which i said you have not been doing is to help igbos to get freedom from nigeria. I want you to use your connection you have in the white house and the american govt. to help Biafra to get independence from nigeria. There is another igbo man who works at the U.S nuclear energy he is also a coloniel in the u.s army, his name is Hillary Njoku from Imo state in nigeria you can work with this people on how to get biafra freedom from nigeria. All the igbos will be grateful to you if you can do your own by helping them out of nigeria, i will also like you to know that Biafra has embassy at new york in america and the movement for the Achalisation of soverign state of Biafra (MASOB) is holding meeting in new york on 18th and 19th of october 2003 and the guest of honour is Koffi Anan the UN scribe, for more information you can go to Biafran web site which is

I myself that is writting to you is a member of movement for actualisation of soverign state of biafra (masob). My name is Simeon Njoku,

Phone 234-8033059772.
God bless you
October 13, 2003




Hi-Nwa Chi-ukwu,

Ezinwa nne m kedu ka i di? It has been a long time we've not heard from each other. I mail Donita to inform you of my times in Nigeria trying to improve in the business i'm.

Prof. Philip, you'r my good brother in Biafra, and you are of a great impotance to me because you'r in my line of business. I know you'll be of good help to me because I'm in the computer line of business. I'm managing some business centres in Enugu. I would like you to help me in telling and sending me the books that will help me to improve my stardand to the best level.

As we are in the struggle for actualisation,we are not sponsored rather we use our purse and I'll like to be the best in my business so that I can make money to help in financing the movement.

Remain blessed Ezinwa nne m.

October 14, 2003







Dear Hero,

Kedu ka imelu?

Olu ina anu ugbua bu olu si ebe di anya ma dikwa nso wee na-abialu gi. Obukwa olu nwa Biafra na ekele gi we na-asi gi daalu nke ukwu n’olu niile ina-olu gi n’uwa niile taa.

Kamgbe mchoputara na obu nwa-afo Biafra na-akpa ike niile enwere na komputa n’ubochi taa, n’igwa gi eziokwu, emegom ka mba niile di iche iche n’uwa mara na Igbo nwere mmadu, oburukwa na amataram na oge, n’igwa gi eziokwu agaram na edere gi akwukwo ekene kwa mgbe-kwa mgbe.

Nwanne-mmadu, onwero ka ohamu n’onu kamana nkwa mna-ekwegi bu na agam na etinyekwagi na ijeoma nnwagi na ekpere, na etinyekwa na ekpele ka umu Biafra nwere onwefa.

Philip nwannem, gaba n’iru na ejim gi eme onu na Naijiria

Agam acho inu olu gi
Jisi ike.

Obu nwa Biafra,
October 22, 2003


I got through your site and felt proud to associate with you as an IGBO man. Please, how possible could you use this site to champion the course of the IGBOS in general; especially the young generation children of Igbos whom mostly have taken to artisan trades due to parental incapability financially, to fund them through high schools.

We can still make something good from those children that have forgotten the path to light in education, and choose to trade especially since after the civil war of late 60s. Which I am one of them . The phobia still trails us.

Please can you introduce a kind of science oriented programes in the south easthern nigeria to enhance our children ability in scientific research programes especially now that we Igbos are clamouring for a sorveriegn state of our own BIAFRA. I look forward to your reply, till then bye bye .


Nnaji Michael Oguejiofor.

Chika Nwokeji

October 25, 2003






More Grease to your kneels. You are almost there!

Fellow compatriots of

Good day, nno!

I am a delighted son of Biafra born of Imo State Origin(Ohuba, Ubomiri in mbaitoli Local Govt Imo), I have been reading through your various publications in the web and others means of communication, and as a man of intellectual sense of humor and a responsible Igbo son, I am to a very high degree fascinated by these publications, so thats why i decided to inquire.

I have for donkey years reading and visiting our beloved web site and most other sites and most time when I go through these pages, i hate my self for being not able to contribute in the actualization of this freedom, but to God be the glory that I can pray for this dream to come true, and He gave us people like you and most other illustrious sons of Igbo.

I wish to solicit you for your tremendous and stupendous endeavors just to make sure that this marginalized and victimized tribe of our forefathers and our off springs, lives in a land where they would never be judged by their tribe or language but by their individual achievements, so with due respect and humble pleasure, I show my Support solidly behind you..................and I say MORE GREASE TO YOUR ELBOWS.

I am also delighted to tell you that as my humble self is in support of you, so is it to every thing that breathes as far as he/she is of Igbo a nutshell, WE ARE SOLIDLY BEHIND YOU. As for me now, what ever it would take just to see that my mother land gains absolute freedom, believe you me, i would do it! that is why i decided to contact you and to show my enormous appreciation and recognition to your most impact making efforts......don't forget to extend my most humble greetings and cheers to my Rel gems like Chief Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu and Chief Barr. Uwazuruike and any other lover of Good things or any other person who has contributed in one way or the other in this fight for freedom......say well done to each and every one of them.....tell them that another lover of freedom has written you again.......we love and pray for all you over there.

Haven will be our limit if they and every other son of our mother land Will continue like this.

Recently, I met a publication that we needs about one million Biafrans to write to the British high Commision telling them to come and disammalgamate what they amalgamated in 1914, so i wish to know more facts and then thier Email Address so as to forward my own request.Considering the most recent killing of MASSOB men I hereby if you desire declare myself humbly as a member of this non violent organization, let them continue in killing innocent and eligible children of God, as for me I fear no evil! My advice to any body who attended the Ist post war int'l conference at Mary land Usa to stay there for now, cos the tenants of Aso rock are deliberating on daily bases and are plannig to exterminate this goal of freedom actualization by pehaps killing some prominent interlects of our motherland.

Rejoice all ye son/daughters/mothers/fathers of Biafra for the day of vindication is here. I wish also to tell you that "He that dwelleth in the secret places of the Most high shall abide by the shadow of the Almighty, so fear no evil.

When the lord of Host shall start to show himself in our case, I tell you, mountains shall be shaken, heads will roll, even the captives of the almighty shall be taken away! its our time!

Hope to read from you soon. udo na onuu nke onye we anyi diri unu nile ndi ihe oma na adi mma.

Best regards,

O bum Nwanne gi na oso ahu make inwenta n'tozuoke na ala Nna anyi bu Biafra,

Ozims Oyinatumba
October 26, 2003


Memory Lane

Fellow Kinsman:

Thanks for such painful but wonderful memories. Biafra forever lives in soul. I never forget how my friends and I filled those blood-soaked days---going to "jumps" and listening to the Fractions at Government College Umuahia and praying for sunlight at the end of a long dark tunnel. Yes, life was very cheap in those days and children bore the brunt of man's brutality towards fellow man.

So many precious lives were wasted---their potentials never to be realized. Such is the fate that every war deals mankind! However, as an old philosopher once stated, "out of chaos" always comes some order. Mindful of this fact, I always thank God, whenever I visit home, for having blessed us with a great nation full of rich and diverse resources. Some order will come to Nigeria someday.

I believe that brighter days await Nigeria.

Chisara Sandra Nwabara
Attorney at Law
Cleveland, Ohio USA
October 28, 2003



















A Response to Clem Ugorji’s Essay:
“General Phillip Effiong and the Biafran War”

It is extremely unfortunate that this guy, Clem Ugorji, would spew such an unwarranted and quite an annoying attack on Philip Effiong Jr. First of all, why does Ugorji stand up for Leo? He sounds like an aggrieved lover defending his girlfriend. If Philip made some kind of assault on Leo (who actually cast the first stone), then why can’t Leo defend himself? Philip made no attack against Ugorji. However, Ugorji, who is clearly blinded by his Ibo sentiments and chauvinism, has chosen to defend his “girlfriend” and launch such an insulting attack against one whom he should ordinarily hold in high esteem.

To make things even worse and shallow, Ugorji attacks Philip’s father (General Effiong) in the process. His assumption that somehow General Effiong has fed Philip, his son, with the views he expresses is unproven and therefore unworthy of this type of discourse. Without any proof, he shouldn’t make such an assumption and subsequently insult General Effiong. He also insults General Effiong by stating that all his involvements in war situations do not add up to heroism? Has Ugorji ever been directly involved in war? What does he know about war? Nothing evidently, otherwise he wouldn’t make such bold and brainless comments. I would like to know what role his father or any member of his family played during the war. None apparently. And yet such cowards are the ones to audaciously refer to others as cowards.

I also don’t see anywhere in Philip’s comments where he demonstrates hatred of any sort for Ibos. And yet, again, this Ugorji guy accuses him of holding something against Ibos.

Whether we Ibos like it or not, our leader, General Ojukwu, was not with us when we most needed him. We must therefore be grateful for those who put their lives on the line for our sake, rather than insult them like Ugorji does. We hold certain people sacred and would not speak against them, at least not publicly. Thus, even though general Ojukwu left with his entire family after urging the people to fight, we don’t speak against him publicly. He had, after all, promised us that the “grasses” would fight if all else fails. He apparently didn’t believe in this philosophy when he saw the need to leave. We would also not speak against Dr. Azikiwe even though he changed sides in the middle of the war. If we, and the likes of Ugorji, would not speak against such figures, no matter what, then why would we speak against General Effiong and put him down? Clearly, then, Ugorji’s motivation is ethnic bias and nothing else.

Whether anyone likes it or not, General Effiong and those that were with him before Biafra’s ultimate collapse should and will always be revered by most Ibos. This is a great relief since it is also a reminder that most Ibos do not think or carelessly run their mouths like Ugorji. We must remain indebted to the likes of General Effiong without whom many of us would not enjoy the privilege of life and the great opportunities that we enjoy today. That includes you, Ugorji, who, because you occupy who-knows-what-office in Lagos, thinks that you are now empowered to insult the people who you should be indebted to and essentially look up to as heroes.

Shame on you, Ugorji. Your ingratitude and arrogance is, sadly, unbelievable. If you still have any iota of dignity in you, you should remove your miserable essay from this site. I see that Philip actually apologised to you. For what? He owes you absolutely no apologies. You should be apologising to him and, especially, his father. That he chose to apologise and avoid such uncouth exchanges shows him to be a man with class and dignity, qualities that you lack woefully.

I think it is only appropriate that I apologise to Philip for your comments. I also want him to understand that most Ibos hold his father and family in high esteem. In other words, the likes of Ugorji and Leo do not represent the majority of us.

In the end, and in a seriously failed attempt at sounding intelligent, Ugorji’s attack is little more than a great pile of perfumed garbage. It is also a cowardly attempt at seeking cheep attention.

I would have sent this response to Ugorji if I had his address. However, in the spirit of fairness I request that this rejoinder be posted on the Emeagwali site, just like Ugorji’s.

Thank you.

Ihuma Nze
ihumanze @
Washington DC
September 5, 2003



I have studied most of the books written about Biafra by Nigerians and others. Emeagwali's pages are interesting if only for the responses.

The affairs that led to the civil war would have happened whether Ifeajuna messed up his aspects of that coup or not. Why? The north had wanted some opportunity to kill Igbos no matter what. Soyinka however showed in "The Man Died" that the killings could have been reduced drastically by the government but they chose not to. This was because where they wanted to they stopped the murderers. Of course since that era, Igbos have been killed in the north for trivial reasons. An example is the Miss World palava. Not only Igbos though. All southerners especially christians are game when the north wants. These killings are used as a tool for political coercion.

But the war could have been avoided. The problem however is that Igbos lack leaders who understand strategy. It is all about effervesence, bloated egos and empty bigmanism (Chinamanda Adichie). From Zik to Orji Kalu it is the same. Igbos are not hindered by unwieldly mores (except the nonsense Osu and also the male diokpa inheritance trash), are mobile, physically and intellectually well endowed, ambitious etc. but the weak spot is leadership, role modelling etc. The secession should have happened five years after or not at all. But the leaders could have negotiated all kinds of concessions that would still be operational now. I don't want to give any examples, an observant person will pick examples from contemporary international/Nigerian politics.

Well done Philip Emeagwali. A nation that butchers its own people cannot become great. A people who look the other way when a part is butchered will suffer. People who kill others to make a point will always be dregs. So sad, so much waste.

November 6, 2003


Dear mr Philip emegwali

Its really a thing of joy and creation worthy of recognition that a biafran scientist will ever creat such an imprinting accord 2 another global history, even at the modern edge of obsolete challenge 2 white people who are regarded as the super creature. So it was in the commemorating landmark of a mathematician stellar chike obi, who excelled the briafran name and marked the feast of his time

I am overjoyed to read about your daily growth and creativity in the field of computer/electronics, after having read about your marvellous feast in the vanguard of 95/96 respectively.

Well, having built a political and skilful development in the field computer and electronics, do not forsake your country especially the land of biafra where your biological formation started while your assignment abroad is periodic do not forget that biafra is a new and in advanced in the field of technological development and therefore, your knowledge in the computer field will be of a great yardstick to resuscitate the country of biafra.

I am a biafran of the super heritage who wish for guidance to facilitate another biafran feast.

Uzomah t. Peters. ----------------------


My name is chuks .I am a medical doctor in the UK and I have just seen Mr Emeagwali's nice pictures on Biafra. I was wondering if you had archive footage of the Biafran Civil war.No one seeme to have any. The history channels on telly are more interested in the second world war. I would appreciate a reply. cheer.







AMAKA. November 8, 2003


nwanne mmadu ejim ezigbo oge were na asigi ma jisie ike na olugi nke ukwuu imego ka mba nigeria na mba uwa marakwa umu igbo nwere mmadu nigwagi eziokwu obiuto na egbum ka mmanya chineke ga edobekwagi ogologo ndu kenekwa ijeoma nnwagi na nwunyegi. ka emesia. obu nwa biafra afam bu ndubuisi........

November 8, 2003








From: "Gabriel Jiabana"

  Thanks Philip (more grease to you)
3 Mar 2003


Hi Philip,


I read the Biafran story and never thought that such a web site do exist. Thanks for bringing to light the events that actually took place during the civil war. I am still very proud that I am an Ibo man.


My dream is to shake Gen. Ojukwu's hand and thank him for his love for Igbo people.


My Mother came from Mba family from Onitsha (Umudei Village) near the General Hospital. During the war, I was very small but I could remember the refugee camp and Caritas around Ufuma and Ajali areas.


Thanks again, your website makes me proud.


Gabriel Jiabana (Baltimore, MD)














18 Dec 2002
From: Gregory Echewodo <>
Subject: ezinwannem



Happy Xmas and New Year.


I was more than happy to receiving your mail after a

long peroid of time contacting you.


As you told me to visit your web site again, I went

into your web site and saw 22 MASSOB Activists docked,

Refused Bail.


I am a member of MASSOB and I escaped this narrow trap

because I was caught the day we went to seeing the

Vectrans of the civil war.  At Orji river I was

arrested and release when soilders of the New Biafra



It is unfortunate we do not have suponsors to helping

us do some certain things that suppose be done to

aviod all this arrest.


In my ward, Nwannem, I am regrouping them to face the

challenge by nest year.  Either Onye Igbo achaa

Nigeria or Anyi ewere oweanyi.


I do not know your say over this movement, whether you

support it or you are against such movement.


I will like to having any little support from you nif

you are for anytime from this date.


I and my ward can get these people bailed if we have

money to have an activist lawyer.


Remain blessed in the Lord, and remember your brothers

over here for the freedom of our people.


Jisike Ezinwannem















06 Feb 2006
Subject: Research project


Dear Dr. Brown;


My name is Donald D Black and I live in Florida.  I am restoring an aircraft as a recreation of one of the "Biafra Babies" flown during the civil war by Count vonRosens group of relief pilots.  This project has been underway for two years now and will require another year to complete.


I have collected as much information as has been available on the internet as well as purchased books which chronically detail the activities of these small aircraft.  I also have a neighbor friend that flew large relief aircraft into Biafra for both the Red Cross and the Christian relief organization.  He has helped me assemble information to permit my resoration work to be accurate.


I am wondering, that if by some stroke of luck, that your archives may reveal some information useful to me, such as photographs of the aircraft, their pilots, and particularly technical details of the aircraft that I may not already have.


My project is the "Biafra Baby" 905BB seen in sketches on the internet and also in the Time-Life book "Soldiers of Fortune".


Possibly you can refer me to someone familiar with the activities of von Rosens group.


thank you for your valuable time,


Donald D, Black

Fort Myers, FL



 From: Aniekwe Maxwell Chukwubike (Dr.)

Dear Philip,
I was 3-months old when it started,& 3+ years when it ended-I mean the WAR,that WAR.You were older,peharps luckier-I nearly died in my mother's arm while she was fleeing from the federal troops with the rest of the family;"see my child has turned red,he has changed colour,he is going to die" exclaimed my dear mother-with sorrowful tears.Encouraged by an uncle,they continued the flight.I am still alive today,but have no country of birth-no not Nigeria,where is Biafra! dear Philip, where is our mother country.
I only heard of you sometime in the year 2004 from a not-very-llitrate Biafran-who was only boisterously claiming that you are an Igbo man and could not remember your name nor give further details about you.Subsequently,searching the internet-hungry of the news about Biafra,you were revealed to me.
I am overjoied,and thank GOD for your life,and that of many other great individuals of Biafran origin.
In my own opinion,while we-Biafrans are still alive,the great Biafran nation lives-on,it is only the eyes of those who are afraid of Biafra and that of those of the international community,still refuse to see and recognise her!The selfish voices of the powers that rule the international community continue to claim that they do not want further conflicts in Africa.In the case of Biafra,sitting down on issues concerning her recognition,the intl. comm. is covering a poweful time bomb with a bare human hand.
The question I want to ask(to whoever),are Biafrans home and abroard really making every effort to present a united front in this drive to restore their home country.Have we learnt the international politics or are we still displaying our bravity and inteligence in utter naivity-hoping that the intl,comm, will come to our aid?
Max,lives in
Ukraine-a 1993 graduate of the university of Biafra Nsukka, with a Dipioma in Engineering & a Doctor of Vet,Medicine Degree.














29 Oct 2005


Igbos, Emeagwali's tribe are in serious bondage in Nigeria. A civil war fourth in 1967-70, was used to slaughter and devasted them. Even now, the Nigerian government is in serious business of stealing their oil wealth with a dubious chant of one-Nigeria. Since then any  of the people of the area who had dared to raise their head in protest against the wicked set-up had been murdered by the government.

   Right now, Ralph Uwazuruike, who is fighting for self determination for Biafran as a sovereign state(through peaceful means) has been kidnapped by the Nigerian government. There are already fears that the government intends to murder him as one of those who kidnapped him was said to have a syringe fall from his pocket in the scuffle for his abduction.

   We are calling on people of good will to step in on this to see that the Nigerian government does not murder him.

   Already we hear that the Nigerin government has contacted Emeagwali to be part of their Space research project and we are using this medium to emplore him not to be part of it. For there can be nothing in it for him or his people, rather, when it becomes successful, it would be a veritable instrument of operation against his people.

    Thanks Emma Maduabuchi.










26 Jul 2005


Ironically, it was out of chaos and war that Zik found his mission, his raison d’être. As an Ibo who understood the basic philosophy and objective of secession, his immediate inclination was to support the action of the head of the Eastern Region and now leader of Biafra, Lieutenant Colonel Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu. His tacit support was accompanied by a stern message in which Zik spelled out his demands for a peaceful, political reconciliation of differences between Ojukwu and General Yakubu Gowon, the military leader of the Federal government. Zik insisted on peaceful resolution and stated unequivocally that if reconciliation could not be achieved without bloodshed, then a unified and peaceful Nigeria must result.


Zik’s support was manifest through an extensive but very low key tour of European and African capitals to win recognition, support and aid for the new nation, Biafra. Most doors were quickly closed to Zik’s pleas, although he found limited success with recognition of sovereignty from Zambia, Gabon, Tanzania and Ivory Coast. Discussions with the government of France yielded a limited quantity of weapons, but the military might of the Federal government, amply equipped by the Soviet Union and United Kingdom, soon led to open warfare. Zik’s worst nightmare was realized.


Zik appealed for the intercession of the Organization of African Unity, the United Nations and the Vatican as a means to reconcile the combatants. In early 1969, Zik, in complete despair at the fighting now raging in his homeland, announced that he could no longer, in good conscience, support the Biafran endeavor and opted instead for a peaceful settlement and a united Nigeria, a goal that he pledged to work hard for.


I was privileged to be at Rhodes House, Oxford, on February 16, 1969, when Zik delivered a masterful address outlining his peace proposals for ending the civil war. In delineating the horrors before the high level group in attendance, Zik sparked a wave of international sympathy for the plight of the millions of starving men, women and particularly children, of breakaway Biafra. Within days of his powerful address, airlifts of food and medicine began from the United Kingdom, Europe and the United States and Canada to Enugu and Port Harcourt.


The last of Biafra’s poorly equipped and demoralized forces were finally overcome in pitched fighting south of Enugu on January 12, 1970. General Ojukwo and his senior officials escaped Federal arrest and detention by fleeing on January 8, 1970, to the Ivory coast. Finally, on January 15, 1970, the Biafran adventure collapsed and ceased to exist, surrendered by an acting President, Philip Effiong.


The fighting that savaged Nigeria was over, but the tragedy was far from finished. The nation, particularly the Eastern Region, was a shambles, with millions of starving and destitute people left in its wake. Zik was a whirlwind of activity, working to calm people and travelling extensively, now seeking support for refugee assistance and national reconstruction and finding a strong measure of international support. Aid flowed and along with it, Zik’s popularity was renewed. In 1970, he announced his re-entry into politics in opposition to General Gowan’s continued military rule. His overtures met with failure and Zik again retreated, this time to an old love, sports. He became active in organizing and running amateur football. He chaired the Nigerian Boxing Board of Control and started the Nigerian Table Tennis Association.


Best of all, through the persistent urging and nagging of his many friends, including me, he completed a work long in progress, his autobiography, published in 1970 in London and New York, entitled MY ODYSSEY. Sadly, it was never updated, so much of Zik’s later years are somewhat clouded. I do know that he found much satisfaction in his appointment on January 1, 1972, to the office of Chancellor of the University of Lagos. This lasted until late 1975 when he was replaced by General Gowon’s military successor, General Murtala R. Muhammad. Turning again to writing, Zik completed ECONOMIC RECONSTRUCTION OF NIGERIA and MEDITATION, a collection of poetry, and finally, his last book, an anthology, TREASURES OF WEST AFRICAN POETRY.





To: <>
Subject: A present - A Biafran Odyssey book
17 May 2005


Dear Philip,


I am writing from Munich, Germany. No doubt, the name "Chidi Giniji" would be unknown to you, but I am sure it would not sound entirely strange. I am one of several million Ibos and many other people, all over the globe, who feel blessed to have a human being like you in our midst.  Without going into further details, may it suffice just to say; "please never let go of the light!" 


I recently published a book tittled "A Biafran Odyssey," which I would like you to read. I am aware of the time restrictions a man like you must have to deal with day to day, but I was so sure this is a book you, your wife or any other members of your family would enjoy reading, I could not resist the urge to offer you a copy. As soon as I get your go ahead, I'll dispatch one to you. By the way, your critique would be highly appreciated! Meanwhile, stay blessed with your entire family.


Yours sincerely,


Chidi Giniji. 












































Memorable Quote

"I want to see no Red Cross, no Caritas, no World Council of Churches, no Pope, no missionary and no UN delegation.

I want to prevent even one Ibo from having even one piece to eat before their capitulation. We shoot at everything that moves and when our troops march into the centre of Ibo territory, we shoot at everything even at things that do not move... "
Benjamin Adekunle, a.k.a. "Black Scorpion," Commander, 3rd Marine Commando Division, Nigerian Army.


[MSOffice42]  [MSOffice43] 




Divine Cup of Wrath

By OBU UDEOZO, University of Jos, Nigeria.

According to Chinua Achebe,

       “Udeozo’s poetry comes to us hot from the foundry of his restless imagination.

         He is a natural poet ready to take on any subject that touches his people.

         We shall hear of him more and more in the years ahead.”


Divine Cup of Wrath is excerpted from Cyclone - an anthology of poems

shortlisted for the 2005 Nigeria LNG literature prize. 



a register

    of cadavers

outside the compass of trade routes:

in Biafra

yawning fabrics

    or leaves

map the passage rites

of pilgrims whose luggage


    in the fever of flight…


… roaring afternoons

snatch unwilling folks

beyond mortality’s curve


bullets pluck persons

    from the bulrushes

        for the elephants’ feast;

and our elders

bargain with death


in loud hunger-propelled night songs

Mozart and his loyal wife

    dancing away the cruel winter…



we have indeed drunk

    the Divine cup of wrath

promised our ancestors


the Jewish Holocaust

    and Biafra’s open graves

        is the same kolanut

offered our blindness.


and the Bible said:


“I swear by myself; declares the LORD,

that Bozrah will become a ruin and an

object of horror, of reproach and of cursing;…”

Jeremiah 49:13


and Okigbo said:

“The drowsy heads of pods in barren farm lands witness it,

The homesteads abandoned in this century’s brush fire witness.



The myriad eyes of deserted corn cobs in burning barns witness




- we endure

toxic echoes

of petulant babies’

veiled and expiring tones

for the sake of their community’s head.


air raids saturate us

    with fatality and fear


their electric birds

    sow death in our

farmlands and pillows


in tunnels and bunkers

    we rehearse the wisdom

        of rodents

and the comfort of ant-holes;


air raids saturate us

    with fatality and fear


and because we cannot sow tomorrow in our soil

starvation salutes us at day break.













our toothless telephones

snore before the shrines of cyberspace

Onitsha Black Continent’s New York

is blind with Methuselah tools


after swallowing Titanics of our rank and file

after roasting our farmlands and crops

after excavating our pregnancies

          with polished and perfumed axe


               they are not appeased...


and before clouds of fire

we are silence,


before acid rain,

we are wailing walls


before a climate of fury

we are solemn prayers


             Rome’s neck


        for Nero’s fanciful blade to roast.

our genes, genealogy

        mother tongue


and daybreak

owe their anger a quick sunset


             we ripen into

                         flaming fangs...


the Asaba solution*

trails us from Churches to Sand Hurst

a tribe’s throat



             before the insanity of cannons

             Amen was fried on our tongues...
















London Observer 21 January 1968: ‘The greatest single massacre occurred in the Ibo town of Asaba, where 700 Ibo males were lined up and shot.’


And Monsignor Georges Rocheau, in an interview with Le Monde, on 5 April 1966 said, “There has been genocide… the region between the towns of Benin and Asaba where only widows and orphans remain, Federal troops having for unknown reasons massacred all the men.”


Frederick Forsyth endeavoured to chronicle this impossible statistics of atrocities in the civil war. At one point he said: ‘At Awka, I saw the corpses of the occupants of a refugee camp…. The men folk had had their hands tied before shooting; to judge from appearances, the women had been subjected to appalling mutilations either before or after death. The bullet broken bodies of the children lay scattered like dolls in the long grass.”

oblivion is enshrined

in cruelty’s Coat of Arms

Igbo hatred is the Lingua Franca

             and every fresh king

        is a shimmering apostle of exponential hate


             their anger glows

                  their anger grows

                  their anger


                       sharpens at sunrise


because your executors

are not appeased


                       their revenge is aflame...


in rainfall,

a tacky dysentery afflicts our roads

and tuberculosis takes over in harmattan,



is the Emperor of the Eastern States

a people policed

          into slavery

        by their kings


- we drink pipe-borne water in dreams alone.




at the meandering course

are dribbled into dishwashing across the globe


and the golden boots

which sow Arsenal’s hat-trick in England

the genius painting Pele’s miracle in France

and laser guides the Pathfinder to Mars;

brains that beat Bill Gates

by lending supercomputers:

             arteries, velocity and cerebellum


    are suddenly dumb

    over roosters of Service Chiefs

    and lepers in monitoring our mutual shores


without one firm finger

on their switch of milk and honey


without one firm finger

on their switch of milk and honey:



a people who

export Bianca Onoh, Mary Onyali, Oyibo Odinamadu, Obiageli Nnodu, Oluchi Onweagba, Chioma Ajunwa, Nikky Gilbert Onuaguluchi & Co.; and supply Stephen Keshi, Chukwuma Igweonwu, Jay Jay Okocha, Kanu Nwankwo, Philip Emeagwali, Bartholomew  Nnaji, Nnamdi Azikiwe, Kenneth Dike, Chike Obi, Chinua Achebe, Fabian Udekwu, Christopher Okigbo, Ben Obumselu, Anthony lkeme, Arthur Mbanefo, Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu, Arthur Nwankwo, Celestine Ukwu, Osita Osadebe, Francis Ngwaba, Ben Enweonwu,  Pius Okigbo, Ralph Uwazurike, Alex Ekwueme, Green Nwankwo, Joe Irukwu, Eddie Iroh, Dora Akunyili, Chuks Iloegbunam, Gregory Lekwuwa, Benard Ogbonna, Charles Chukwuma Soludo, Macauly Onuigbo, Maik Nwosu, Bona Ezeudu, Beze Adogu, Okechukwu Oko, Ike Okonta, Chidi Umeano, Obiwu, Uche Nduka, Obi Nwakanma, Basil Okeahialam....


witness their seedlings

swallowed by gutters across the globe

forced to spit upon their gods...

Your offspring are gwonjo hawkers worldwide

delinquency devours

    the genius of your folks. . . .



the goat knows its fodder

the leopard on its trail...”


    we share fatal finitude


    Scarlet Macaws, Dorcas Gazelles

    Siberian Tigers, Fire Finches, Tiny-

    Golden Tamarinds or the latent eclipse of Oryxes...


        oblivion awaits us

    on the obverse of the worm-hole....


    our genes, genealogy,

        mother tongue


    and daybreak

        is extinction bound


    - and they are not appeased


        we owe their anger,











with swords longer than one year

    and sharper than acid

    horse whips and python clubs


they combed the teeth of every rock


    armpits of mountains

    bowels of forests

    and surveilled ant-holes across the land


for Igbos to roast across the land


waves, upon waves, upon waves

trainloads, trailers, and trucks,

in wheelbarrows and body bags;

football fields and market squares


             their massacre was aflame...


Igbos blossomed in graveyards

    saturating streets

        with blood and bones



from Kano to Kaura Namoda,

Kafanchan to Fadan Karshi,

from Bornu to Timbuktu

    Igbos were cleansed

    from rooftops and market squares


    until the ocean vanished

    and the sea surrendered

    her last plea of moisture...


-and they are not appeased


             their revenge is aflame...








the universe froze

at the ferocity of mankind

darkness ruled the hearts of men

Africa’s holocaust unmapped....


and daylight

vomited blood

and reconstructed graveyards

groaned from saturations afresh


in streetsful of dead Igbos

the climate was:

blood and bones


but these they labelled flies

             void census and statistics


for their revenge is aflame...


with the pogrom’s switch

in automatic mode

and the 3-year war on song



Nweke Udeozo

my father said:

witness history’s first

colour blind marriage across the compass;

Communism and the West

in a strange and sudden tango

to pepper Igbos with

one annihilating blow...


             Agrippa and Pilate’s


        over the blood of Christ


and our brothers

arrived in fractions


our brothers

arrived as spare parts


    Gabriel Okoh, Theo Okeke, ...


    Chief George Mbonu; and Mrs. Adekunle whose knife      

    is sacred but her teeth craves forbidden meat:

    punctiliously signalled Nwandu to the assassins...


from Kano to Kaura Namoda,

rooftops to market squares

until the ocean vanished


and the dark census awakes:













Mr. Brown Agbogu of ATMN Bukuru

Morris Okam

Nwibe Enweani

Samuel Anudu

Mr. C.C. Nwokoye of Akwa

Mr. Nwari of Awka (All of these killed in Jos)



             Mr. Nweke Ufele

             Godwin Okeke of Nguru fame

             Clement Nwankwo of ACB Nguru

             Lawrence Okeke

             Eric Okonkwo of Gusau

             Iliemene Nweke Mene


Louis Nwoyeocha

Reuben Nwandu

Oji Okoye Okwubunne

Emmanuel L. Nkwocha

Nwankwo Okika

Lawrence Ifitezue













a grim chronicle from Enugwu—Agidi, a mere single town,

out of the several hundreds of towns and cities in Igbo Land.


                  Nwamadi Ifitezue

                  Uyanwune Ifitezue

                  Ernest Onyejeli

                  Anthony Ofoedu

                  Simon Onwuemene

                  Bernard Okoye Nwune


Benson Ogu

Okeke Okwubunne

Nweke Nwine

Okonkwo Nwine (genealogy wiped)

Mgbeke Nwine

Kutanya Okoye Igwikolo


                  Moses Okoye Nkili

                  Nwafor Okongwu

                  Nweke Ivenso

                  Okoye Nmoh

                  Okonkwo Ego

                  Ementa llodigwe


Okeke Odigili Ama

Ofoedu Ivenso

Okoye Enweana



Okeke  Ibeki

Nwokike Ibeki

Aghaegbune Okoye Akuakor



                  Nwafor Anagor

                  Oranu Okolobu

                  Nwamadu Idegwu

                  Hyacinth Ibeki

                  Nweke Okonkwo Ego

                  Nwanne Okoye Anagbogu


Reginald Okeke

Odii Nwaku

Andrew Anikpe

Okeke Arize

Okoyenta Onuorah

Joseph Ifitezue



                  Felix Ifitezue

                  Nwanebe Ifitezue

                  Okoye Ifitezue

                  Mgboye Ifitezue (nee Igboanugo)

                  Nwokeke Kameme

                  Mgbafor Enemmor



Nwamgboye Nwolisekwe

Mankwocha Nwokoye

Okekenta Okoye

Okafor Ndife

Nwankwo Igboanusi

Nwankwo Eligwo



             Okeke Anaduaka

             Nweke Chilete

             Okeke Akamala

             Christopher Okafor

             Chidebe Ogadi

             Afocha Nwankwo Adunma



Eric Obunabo

Chukwuma Okafor Akuafor

Onyeibo Ani Modozie

Agwuncha Nwokafor

Nwanmadi Mgbajiaka

Anene Uluekwu



             Nwanyaegbo Nwankwo

             Okafor  Patego

             Tabansi Anaoji




             Mgbekeocha Ogadi

             Mgba Nwodu Anareñe

             Nwije Ilozor



Mankwocha Udeozo*

Peter Ilozor

Mgbeke Okoye

Eric Anenwe

Nweke Nwego (and his wife)

Anaso Igboanugo

Ojukwu Añuta



             Thomas Anenye

             Anakpu Okonkwo

             Nwufo  Mokwuo

             Nwaku Nwufo

             Patrick Nweke

             Cordelia Ilozor


Israel Sunday Chinyelu

Ejiofor Chinyelu

Ilojianya Chinyelu

Nwaomunu Chinyelu

Mgbeke Chinyelu

Josiah Nwandu











My Paternal Grandmother died 8 October, 1968.



        Sunday Josiah Nwandu

        Chukwuma Okonkwo Uchendu

        Mgbeke Uchendu

        lwuchukwu Okonkwo

        Nwandu Okonkwo

        Okafor Obuah (and his wife)


Okoye Onwurah

Okoloudo Nkeakwa

Nwafor Ifenacho

Okafor Ejinaka

Nkwocha Nwokoye

Nwaku Nkwocha



    Cecilia Nkwocha Nwokoye

    Nechi Nkwocha Nwokoye

    Mr. Iwotor of the Nigeria Rail Ways, Bauchi.

    Mr. Onyali of the General Hospital, Bauchi.

    Meniru Ikpeamana

    Amechi Okoye



Peter Nwaneki

Peter Nogeli

Samuel Okoli




Okafor Chilete

Patrick Onuorah

Onuorah Okeke Nwanma



             Bernard Okeke Nwanma

             Christian Nwaneki

             Nweke Obiorah

             Nathaniel Nmoh

             Eduzor Nkwonta

             Abalaora Chieme


Okoye Menu

Nwobu Egwuekwe

Christopher Egwuekwe

Nwakuabia Obiorah

Akueke Mbonu

Mgboye Isidaenu



        Chieme Akunkwo

        Uchenu Okeke

        Nwezele Igboekwe

        Mgbeke Anaeme

        Okoye Nwanyaka

        Ekenma Dozie




Okafor Duaka

Unoaku Morah

Jeremiah Nwankwo

Nwamgboye Egwuekwe

Ekpe Nwaogalanya

Caroline Ikeanyi



             Akuekwu Nwoyeocha

             Albert Igboanugo (and his wife)

             Okoye Mgbeke

             Nwoduijele Nwanisobi

             Nwambu Ogadi

             Nwude Nwokeke



        Paul Okafor

        Onuekwusi Enumele

        Nwanna Enemmor

        Okoye Enemmor

        Nmonwuba Okoye Enemmor

        Chigbata Okoye Enemmor





             Okoye Anawana

             Anyaora Uregwu

             Daniel Ayeke

              Okeke Ofiaeli

             Chinwude Okoye Ezeudu

             Simeon Ezete



Anaesolu Ezete

Jonathan Nwankwo

Silvanus Okonkwo

Joseph Omaefi

George Okam

Innocent Omaefi


             Nwafor Obike

             Ekemezie Enunwoke

             Innocent Okwubunne

             Mgboye Mpuatu

             Ojukwu Duaka



Nwoye’gbune Okeke

Mgbogafor Modozie

Ebenezer Omaefi



Okoye Nwanyakonwu

Okeke Nwanyakonwu

Tabugbo Duaka


                  Chianumba Okeke

                  Ibeki Obuorah

                  Obed Oraegbune

                  Nweke Nga

                  Onwumelu Nnangwu

                  Moses Okoye Nmoh



Patrick Onyekwelu

Solomon Okeke

David Amanambu

Chidume Okonkwo Ego

Eric Obunabo

Onuorah Okeke Egwuekwe



        Onuorah Amazigwom Enweani

        Nwankwo Udozo Nebeolisa

        Nwamadu Ojukwu Nweneteanya

        Chinwuba Okonkwo Igweonwu

        Benedict Ekesi

        Ogbonnia Richard Okonkwo





Nwankwo Ifenacho

Cecillia Ifenacho

Ugoye Ifenacho

Nwankwo Nwegbo

Nwora Okafor Onwanuo

Anyaegbune Anameze



        Felix Anameze

        Biamali Anameze

        Margaret Anameze

        Mankwocha Anameze (nee Nechi)

        Nduba Onwudi

        Nworamali Anagbo


Okoye Anaefune

Mankwo Anafune

Okoye Ogalanya

Ifeanyi Okolobu

Benson Akabueze (and his wife)

Ifeanyi Akabueze



        Chidebe Okeke

        Nwamadu Anaduaka

        Okoye Nwogo



             Nwankwo Okafor Obodoaku

             Jonathan Aguolu

             Josiah Aguolu



Emmanuel Okeke

Anene Chedom

Okoye Aguigwo

Okoye Ibeilo

Ibeilo Chukwura

Okoye Emekwisie


             Ojukwu Mgbajiaka

             Umeadu Ilora

             Lewis Ekwealor

             Nwankwo Akunkwo

             Okonkwo Ilora

             Nwoye Nñuli



Jonathan Duaka

Hyacinth Mpuatu

Nwanyaerie Chukwura

Okonkwo Ekesi

Nwonwu Ayaebu

Nwilo Aguolu  





             Okonkwo Nwanyako

             Ibegbune Emekwisie

             Mankwo Nnanyelu

             Nwankwo Nmo Aghogbune

                              (and his two wives)

             Okolo Duaka

             Victor Okoye Akuakor



Mgboyeocha Okoye Akuakor

Theophilus Okafor

Nwafor Obike

Nweke Chedom

Okafor Obidike

Nwankwo Onwuakpa


              Philip Ezendu

             Okonkwo Uregwu

             Okafor Nkilo

             Nathaniel Uzoka

             Nwanaebene Obuogu

             Nwobu Igbo



Nwokonkwo Nwadogbu

Nwudu Nkilo

John Aghuche



Paul Okonkwo Nonyelu

Agbonma Nweke Mkpaja

Obed Agwuncha Okafor



             Augustine Nwandu

             Nwanjo Okeke

             Chinwoke Ibenegbu

             Chiedozie Egwuonwu

             Sunday Okonkwo

             Nkwo Anyaorah


Sussana Anyaorah

Obeleokoye Ekeokwu

Nwankwo Ubosi

Isaac Nwobu

Ozo Nwobu Maneke

Nwanna Okafor Duaka



        Ugonwa Nwokoye Chinweaku

        Akuekwu Nwokoye Chinweaku

        Nwunye Joel Udeze

        Adolphus Ndulue

        Anakwuba Okeke Ama

        Nwoye Okeke Ama




Mgbafor Udeji

Nweke Nwanadile

Michael Okafor Aru

Alice Okafor Aru

Igwevi Ogadi

Nwanaigwe Okafor



             Okeke Onunkwo

             Uchendu Ovulunne

             Nwaku Anyaorah

             Alexander Ezue

             Amoge Ezue

             Ogechukwu Igweonwu



Anyanechi Nwalado

Jacob Nwabuji

Mgbeke Nwabuji

Anyankwo Nebechi

Onuorah Obunwa

Emerenti Obunwa



        Obiageli Onuorah (nee Obunwa)

        Tagbo Obunwa

        Ilonwa Onyeocha

        Nwoye Onyeocha



             Njideka Okeke Odogwu

             Anene Okonkwo Anawana


Nwafor Okonkwo Anawana

Jerome Okoye (Captain Lee)...



The Late Children of

Sampson C. Okoye

of Etiti Village Enugwu—Agidi:



    Chika Okoye

    Ngozi Okoye

    Nkemdilim Okoye

    Josephine Okoye

    Nwakego Okoye

    Osita Okoye*



















*First cousins of the poet who perished in the Biafran War.

This list however, does not include children and adolescents,

whose memories have curiously been swallowed by Time.






-  dead Igbos

were dumped in decimals:

left femurs, three-quarter trunks, cracked clavicles,

crushed girdles, limping ears, yanked genitals,

flying heads,

precursors of the Gideon Akaluka arrogant show

unscratched cadavers

    putrid and wet

mutilated bodies, babies, foetuses

    which fanatical axes split

waves, upon waves, upon waves

    of dead Igbos

saturated a season

    and Nigeria’s soil was drunk


but these they labelled flies

    void census and statistics


             for their revenge is aflame...









their revenge is aflame

and foists slavery upon us


their revenge is aflame


Ironsi, their revenge is aflame


and fake lions flee

your memorials in Abuja and Lagos

but garnish the anniversary of Butchers

with Harvard tinted grammar and champagne


Igbos flee

from your memorials across the land


for their revenge is aflame...




    every blade of grass

        fed the massacre


    every tributary

        fuelled the graveyard


    every face of earth

        pumped profits of Igbo blood


    every village

        boasted kilometres of martyrs


    every cycle of slaughter

        amplified their outrage


    we fell in swoops and squadrons

    in trucksful and trainloads

    an African Auschwitz;

        with London’s morals at 4 O’clock


    an African Gallipoli

              with Washington kissing Moscow in Kubla Khan;

        Yugoslavia, Egypt and the Gulf States

                    “fanning the embers...”


    - prognosis of the debacle in Hamman Gog.



    Igbos perished like locusts

    some buried alive

    but at last


             Rome’s neck


             for Nero’s fanciful blade to roast.


    their swords, guns, pickaxes, and python clubs    

    drank the blood of kings and merchandise


    but they are not appeased


             - their anger is aflame...


so they chase us

beyond the jugular

profaning our Ikenga and Cross

uprooting our teeth alive:

pixilated, our nativity’s Ogbu Chi

battles the pityriasis of hatred


for their revenge is aflame...



they chase us

into twilight

with castration as their Coat of Arms

our regression as Constitution


subliminal slaughter punctuates our footsteps

a dirge escorts our toil in every sphere


and now that the first pilots

are dishwashers across the globe


and without one firm finger

on their switch of milk and honey


this bearded cruelty blossoms


because they are not appeased...

our oblivion is their goal


    their anger glows

             their anger grows

             their anger

                                                      sharpens at sunrise


Major General J. T. U. Aguiyi Ironsi


                  their revenge is aflame....




- by  Obu Udeozo.






father of the internet, supercomputer, IQ, quotes, family, timeline, bio, net worth, childhood, inventions, biography, computer, dale, invention, invented, Nigerian, African American, black man created

























 [MSOffice1]Military Atrocities 30th October 1968 Major General Henry T Alexander of Great Britain talking to a Nigerian soldier during the observers investigations in Nigeria into the Biafran charges of genocide during the war.

 [MSOffice2]Philip Emeagwali, Onitsha, Nigeria, 1973.

 [MSOffice3]Biafran soldiers at river bank.

 [MSOffice4]A Biafran child at a Catholic feeding center, east of Oguta.

 [MSOffice5]A Biafran child at a Catholic feeding center, east of Oguta.

 [MSOffice6]A Biafran refugee at a Catholic feeding center, east of Oguta.

 [MSOffice7]Umuahia, Biafra. October 1968

 [MSOffice8]The Biafran Flag

 [MSOffice9]Emeagwali was 12 years old when the 30-month Nigerian-Biafran war started in June 1967. Because 50,000 Igbo civilians were killed, his parents withdrew him from Saint Georges Grammar School in Obinomba their home to Agbor and a couple of weeks later the family fled to Onitsha. During the war, Emeagwali’s family lived in refugee camps in Ogidi, Awka, Oba, Nnewi, Awka-Etiti and Ndoni.  Emeagwali was conscripted into the Biafran army in July 1969 at Ndoni. He was initially sent to the Oguta war front but quickly transferred to serve as a cook’s assistant for Biafran army officers.




Emeagwali (far left, sitting in front row) at Saint George’s College, Obinomba, 1966)

 [MSOffice10]Bianca Odumegwu Ojukwu, Philip Emeagwali and Dale Emeagwali

 [MSOffice11]Joan Baez And Jimi Hendrix Chatting
Folk singer Joan Baez and rock singer Jimi Hendrix chat between acts at a Biafran Relief Benefit show at a place in Manhattan called Steve Paul's Scene. Both Miss Baez and Hendrix performed free of charge and Hendrix contributed $500 cash to the fund. The benefit was to raise food and money for refugees of the Biafra-Nigeria Civil War. © Bettmann/CORBIS Date Photographed:
August 29, 1968 Location Information: New York, New York, USA

 [MSOffice12]An artist's rendition of the genocidal killings of civilians in African wars

 [MSOffice13]Nigerian Boy Squats; Crowd @ Unicef Truck
Original Caption:
7/23/1969-Republic of Nigeria- While man looks upward at the moon and beyond, thinking of the nobility of his race, the age-old problems of his home planet remain unsolved. Here, a starving Nigerian child squats in the dust of a dirt road, forgotten in the excitement over the arrival of UNICEF relief supplies. © Bettmann/CORBIS Date Photographed July 23, 1969 Location Information Republic Of Nigeria

 [MSOffice14]Women & Children Get Food At Refugee Camp
Caption: 3/22/1969-Umuahia, BIAFRA- By all military odds, Biafra should have lost its war with federal Nigeria long ago. It has not lost, but in the next few months it might--vanquished by starvation. Here, women and children receive their meager rations at a refugee camp. © Bettmann/CORBIS

EMEAGWALI's NOTE: While living at Saint Joseph's Primary School refugee camp at Awka-Etiti, we stood in long lines for okporoko (dried stock fish) and corn meals. Our family of nine lived on two cups of garri --- pulverized cassava root --- a day! Some days, we could not afford meat, pepper or even salt. We merely added water and palm kernels that I gathered from the forest to our gari. In April 1968, my four-year-old brother, Peter, was contracted Kwashiorkor, a disease caused by lack of protein which was suffered by half of the refugee children. His hair was turning red, and Dad being a nurse, diagnosed it as Kwashiorkor. Other symptoms of Kwashiorkor included protruded stomachs, skinny legs and arms, and peeling skins. Dad went to Caritas and begged for extra milk for Peter.


 [MSOffice15]Soldiers Standing
Original Caption:
Agwu, Nigeria: A federal government soldier, wearing camouflaged helmet and with ammunition belt draped about his torso, stands with other soldiers recently. Agwu, south of breakaway Biafra's capital of Enugu, is the point through which Nigerian authorities say they will open a "mercy corridor" to permit the enty of food and medecine to the stricken rebel state. 7/17/1968 © Bettmann/CORBIS

 [MSOffice16]Biafrans Running For Military Training
Original Caption:
8/7/1968-Biafra, Africa- This is military training Biafran style. These recruits go through the paces somewhere in Biafra. Nigerian spokesmen have been meeting with a delegation from secessionist Biafra in peace talks in Ethiopia in a bid to end Nigeria's 13-month-old civil war. Meanwhile starvation threatens many in beseiged Biafra. © Bettmann/CORBIS

 [MSOffice17]Ibo Tribesman Inspecting Rifle
Original Caption: An Ibo tribesman inspects a rifle during young soldiers' training at the camp at Owerri. After their initial training, the soldiers go to join the front line forces in
Biafra's struggle against Nigerian federal troops. © Bettmann/CORBIS

 [MSOffice18]Biafran Soldier with Rifle
Original Caption: The gun the soldier is holding is described as as Communist AK-47 rifle. Sources at the
US television network could offer no more information about the weapon. © Bettmann/CORBIS Date Photographed: June 4, 1969 Location Information Okwala Junction, Biafra

 [MSOffice19]Starving Biafran Woman Lying On Mat
Original caption:
7/31/1968-Aba, BIAFRA- An elderly, starving Biafran woman lies on a mat in General Hospital. Hundreds of Biafrans have died as a result of critical food shortages. It is reported that BIAFRA's leader, Lieutenant Colonel Odumegwo Ojukwu, has forbidden the necessary food to reach the country through a neutral corridor for fear federal Nigerian troops will poison it. © Bettmann/CORBIS Date Photographed July 31, 1968 Location Information Aba, Biafra

EMEAGWALI's PERSONAL NOTE: My father was the refugee camp nurse at
Saint Joseph's Primary School, Awka-Etiti. Our camp director was an intelligent and talkative elderly man named Mr. Okadigbo (I believe he is the father of Chuba Okadigbo).

Many refugees died from Kwashiorkor and were unceremoniously buried at the camp backyard. The refugees in our camp were those that fled the Asaba massacres.


 [MSOffice20]Editorial Reviews

Book Description
War Stories: A Memoir of Nigeria and
Biafra by John Sherman tells the story of an American who served with a food/medical team operated by the International Committee of the Red Cross during the civil war in Nigeria in the late 1960s. It contains flashbacks to the time when the author had been a Peace Corps Volunteer in the same area of West Africa (in 1966-67). The book has 16 pp. of photographs taken by the author during the war and also includes illustrations of some memorabilia of Nigeria and Biafra collected by the author. Front matter includes a chronology of events for Nigeria and Biafra, 1960-70, and maps of the area, along with a glossary, to provide readers with perspective on the situations described in the book.

The memoir began as a diary kept by John Sherman when he lived in West Africa in the late 1960s. Sherman arrived in Nigeria in September 1966 as a Peace Corps Volunteer teacher assigned to a school in the then-Eastern Region of the country. On May 30, 1967, the Eastern Region seceded and became the Republic of Biafra. Civil war soon followed and Sherman was evacuated. He spent the next year with the Peace Corps in Malawi, in southeastern Africa, then returned to Nigeria to work with the International Committee of the Red Cross. At first, he was assigned to work at the airport at Lagos, then the country's capital. Soon, he was sent to work with a food/medical team in an area that had been, briefly, a part of Biafra but was now again in Nigerian hands.

Sherman worked with a doctor and two nurses and several young men who were responsible for distributing the food each day at clinics where they treated hundreds and fed thousands of people who were struggling to survive the horrible conditions brought about by the war.

Sherman's book brings the reader uncomfortably close to the horrors of war, especially how it affects those least responsible for the war -- the children. The team he served with attempted to save the lives of hundreds of children every day, many of whom were suffering from kwashiorkor -- extreme malnutrition.

The book shows Sherman's evolution from being pro-Biafran (he had attempted to return to Biafra, but was unable to get there, so he joined the Red Cross on the Nigerian side of the civil war) to someone who saw the good and evil on both sides and who quickly understood the futility of all war, particularly the one he became so personally involved in.

From the Author
This is, unfortunately, a timely book. Sadly, a book about war and the futility of war is always a timely topic. Although the story I tell took place 35 and more years ago, I am confident that readers too young to remember the events will, nonetheless, benefit from the story and learn a piece of history that, at the time, held the world's attention. Those who do remember can relate to the tragedy described in the book. Being a memoir, it is a highly personal view of a broader situation, but readers of the book who were not aware of the events described have found it compelling.


 [MSOffice21]Colonel Ojukwu, August 23, 1968 issue of TIME
August 23, 1968 was my 14th birthday. I dropped out of school and was then living at Saint Joseph's Primary School, Awka-Etiti. Like most schools in Biafra, Saint Joseph was converted into a refugee camp.

 [MSOffice22]Wole Soyinka was imprisoned during the Nigerian-Biafran Civil War.



The man died: prison notes of Wole Soyinka by Wole Soyinka



David Jackson (Melbourne, Victoria Australia) - See all my reviews

This is the story of Soyinka's 27 month period of imprisonment at the hands of the Nigerian government. Unlike, say, Nelson Mandela's autobiography, which generally casts a similar subject in its wider political and social contexts, this is fundamentally a personal account, painfully private at times. Essentially, Soyinka found refuge from the brutality inflicted upon him by retreating into and living within his own mind. At times he drifted about the frontiers of madness, hanging on to his self by a thread. At others he pondered, listened, watched, like only the truly otherwise unoccupied can. And, importantly, he also managed to scrounge paper and a pencil from time to time and record his journey of motionlessness. For those interested in the human mind, this is a rewarding book, and I highly recommend it.

 [MSOffice23]Federal Troops Watched By Biafrans
Villagers watch a group of Nigerian federal troops in a Biafran town.
Biafra was a region of eastern Nigeria that seceded from 1967 to 1970. © Bettmann/CORBIS

 [MSOffice24]Malnourished Nigerian Child
Original Caption:
1/13/1970-BIAFRA- The 30-month-old Nigerian civil war, the end of which now seems certain, brought untold misery and deprivation to hundreds of thousands of Nigerians: men, women, children, the old and infirm. In this photo, an emaciated Nigerian child waits with others for the emergency food and medical shipments which offered a measure of hope to the people of the secessionist province. © Bettmann/CORBIS

 [MSOffice25]Mother with Starved Child
Original Caption: Nigerian mother and child with their empty food bowl. © Hulton-Deutsch Collection/CORBIS Photographer: Dempster Date Photographed
January 21, 1970 Location Information: Nigeria

 [MSOffice26]Refugee Child W/Bowl At Food Dist. Ctr.
Original caption:
1/22/1970-Owerri, Nigeria- Holding his pan, a young refugee waits for food at a distribution center. Nigerian authorities in Port Harcourt held incommunicado 80 foreign newsmen who reported scenes of starvation, rape, and chaos in the former Biafran territory. © Bettmann/CORBIS Date Photographed January 22, 1970 Location Information Owerri, Nigeria

EMEAGWALI'S PERSONAL NOTE: On about this day (1/22/70), my family and I returned to Onitsha. We had no money , no food, and no shelter. We also stood in line for free food.


 [MSOffice27]Yakubu Gowon Holding Press Conference
Original caption: Nigerian Federal Leader Major General Yakubu Gowon (wearing peak cap with red band) addresses a press conference in
Lagos, January 22nd. © Bettmann/CORBIS Date Photographed January 22, 1970 Location Information Lagos, Nigeria

 [MSOffice28]Customers Observing Yams at Onitsha Market
Original Caption:
Nigeria--Fighting for Peace. The market at Onitsha is open once more and prospective customers inspect an enormous pile of yams. © Bettmann/CORBIS Date Photographed: April 25, 1970 Location Information: Onitsha, Nigeria

 [MSOffice29]Village 5-8 km north of Umuahia. The village was bombed in October 1968 by the Nigerian airforce-2




 [MSOffice30]Children in a village 5-8 km north of Umuahia. The village was bombed in October 1968 by the Nigerian airforce

 [MSOffice31]Medical clinic in Mabaitoti - Owerri.jpg

 [MSOffice32]Medical clinic in Mabaitoti - Owerri-2

 [MSOffice33]Emeagwali and his family were part of this crowd that fled from heavy artillery attacks and a few hours before the Nigerian army captured Awka. [Photo:  The Fall of Awka, Life Magazine, July 12, 1968]


 [MSOffice34]Medical clinic in Mabaitoti - Owerri-3.jpg

 [MSOffice35]Police officer at Ubulu near Uli airport.jpg









 [MSOffice40]Village 5-8 km north of Umuahia. The village was bombed in October 1968 by the Nigerian airforce.jpg

 [MSOffice41]Benjamin Adekunle shooting  “at everyting that moves” in Biafra.

 [MSOffice42]Benjamin Adekunle, a.k.a. "Black Scorpion," addressing his 3rd Marine Commando Division

 [MSOffice43]Politics Civil War 12th October 1970 London England Colonel Benjamin Adekunle


 [MSOffice45]By Obu Udeozo

 [MSOffice46]Village 5-8 km north of Umuahia. The village was bombed in October 1968 by the Nigerian airforce-2.jpg

 [MSOffice47]By Obu Udeozo

 [MSOffice48]Egyptian pilots flew Soviet Jets that blasted several homes in Emeagwali’s neighborhood. [Photo:  Nigerian bombing raid,  General Hospital, Aba, Nigeria, Life Magazine, July 12, 1968]


 [MSOffice49]By Obu Udeozo

 [MSOffice50]Egyptian pilots flew Soviet Jets that blasted several homes in Emeagwali’s neighborhood. [Photo:  A searching for her daughter after a Nigerian bombing raid, Life Magazine, July 12, 1968]