The Eastern Nigerian Civilian Consultative Assembly has called for the region's secession from Nigeria -- they want the creation of an independent republic, to be known as Biafra.
GV Assembly building
SV pro-republic demonstrators
SV pan ditto
SV pan interior, Ojukwu enters
GV & SV Ojukwu speaking (SOF STARTS "Our meeting today..." SOF ENDS:"....in this country".
SV Assembly members
SV Ojukwu sits down
TRANSCRIPT: SEQ. 7: OJUKWU: Our meeting today is very crucial. The east is at the crossroads. Since our last meeting everything possible has been done by the enemies of east to escalate the crisis in an attempt to bring about the collapse of this region. They have failed, and will continue to fail.
In 1953 the late Sir Abubakar Tafewa Balewa, in a speech in the Legislative Council, said: 'Since the amalgamation of the southern and northern provinces in 1914, Nigeria has existed as one country only on paper. It is still far from being united. The country is inhabited by peoples and tribes who speak different languages; who have different religions; different customs and traditions; and entirely different historical backgrounds, and their way of life, and who have also gained different stages of development. We do not want our southern neighbours to interfere in our development. But I should like to make it clear to you that if the British quitted Nigeria now at this stage the Northern people would continue their interrupted conquest to the sea.'
Interrupted conquest. That has always been the northern intention. Thank God that the east has now awakened to its responsibilities, and with that awakening that ambitious dream will never be fulfilled in this country.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: The Eastern Nigerian Civilian Consultative Assembly has called for the region's secession from Nigeria -- they want the creation of an independent republic, to be known as Biafra. Nigerian federal authorities have declared a state of national emergency.
The military governor of the Eastern region, Colonel Ojukwu, was called upon to state the case for secession. He told a meeting of the consultative assembly:
The Consultative assembly says Biafra should establish its own diplomatic and commercial relations.