By Tim Tochukwu
For Biafra Choice Writers
Rapheal Lebanya Uwazuruike has always been a crooked fellow, dubious and fraudulent in all his ways. He started life in a very small way, just as he started his Biafran agitation, grew and has now ended very badly. And this is because he did everything through lies and deceit.
His success with the Biafran struggle was just by accident, and it surprised him. He never expected that it would be successful in a short time the way it went. But as the dubious fellow he is, he could not bring truth to bear in the struggle and so tainted it with fraud.
As a matter of fact, when he started out in 1999, he meant it to be a blackmail tool against Nigeria government. The Nigerian government then was under one of the world’s most wicked individuals at the time, Olusegun Obasanjo. Uwazuruike hoped to use the agitation to gain recognition from Obasanjo, and in the process to be bribed with political position.
To keep the record straight, he was a member of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), whose group was tactically schemed out of reckoning by the Atiku/Obasanjo political machine. That was why he started looking for ways to bounce into reckoning, and Biafra agitation provided a leeway for that.
The idea came from a group of Igbo-Biafran men in Lagos, known as Igbo Council of Chiefs. They had all agreed on the idea of resurrecting the Biafra struggle and so floated a movement they called Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB). Uwazuruike was chosen to head it. But he ended up hijacking it.
But before hijacking it, he had approached many Biafran journalists across a great number of media houses in Nigeria, mostly those in the Lagos/Ibadan axis. He appealed to them to assist in the struggle. Going further, he appealed to an inner-circle few that he believed were as dubious as he was. To them he told the truth. What he told that was that it was a political “game” he was playing. They all gave him the support, both those who knew that it was a “game” and those who did not know.
The instant acceptance surprised him. He did not know that a silent majority of Biafrans were already tired of Nigeria and were waiting for a way out. Many were ready to even lay down their lives for the greater good of Biafran people. But they did not see a leadership they could trust. They had already seen that many Biafrans – mostly the politicians – were mere “efulefu”; people who are groveling political prostitutes that were ready to sell their people and their common wealth for a price – however little.
When Uwazuruike suddenly realized that the people were fanatical about Biafra, and ready to obtain it by any means necessary, he became exceedingly joyful. Eventually he was abducted by the Nigerian government, and there he struck his deal with the government.
When he came out, he started playing double-standard games, and many people who did not know him still believed that he still had the fire for the struggle, and planned with him. But they were mistaken, Uwazuruike had sold out, he only found flimsy excuses to avoid serious commitment. He only engaged in anything serious anytime Nigerian government want to renege on its own part of the bargain.
That was what brought his involvement in the Radio Biafra issue.
He was approached by Nnamdi Kanu, the IPOB leader (who had already purchased the transmitter and secured the studio, and asked to pay for shortwave transmission through satellite only. At that time Nigeria government had stopped paying his ransom money, and he was trying to move their hands by showing them how much he could hurt the country. That was why he accepts to pay that first installment, but after the government restored his money, he reneged on his pledge to continue paying for the broadcast.
When the Radio Biafra crew came down to Nigeria to ascertain whether what they were hearing that he had sold out was true, he told Nigerian Police to arrest them that they had come to disrupt the election of that year, 2007.
Unfortunately for him, the Police refused to arrest them, because it was apparent to them (the Police) that the Radio Biafra crew had not committed any offence. What Uwazuruike did was to kidnap Kanu by himself. While under his then, Uwazuruike and his men stripped the man naked, asked women to spit and urinate on him, and beat him mercilessly. After that Uwazuruike took a naked picture of him as his blackmail tool, and telling him that if he dares to tell anybody what happened or criticize him, that he would release the picture and tell the world that he once ran mad.
Kanu has since ignored him and continued with his Biafra agitation.
Another Uwazuruike’s “game” wicked game took place in 2008, when MASSOB members contributed and gave him money to open the international arm of the struggle. He was sent to the
Another Uwazuruike’s “game” wicked game took place in 2008, when MASSOB members contributed and gave him money to open the international arm of the struggle. He was sent to the United States of America (USA), to commission lobbyists. But when he got there, he attempted to buy a house with the money. He was discovered, and he ran back to Nigeria and started to peddle lies about those he was directed to meet in the USA.
When MASSOB members realized that Uwazuruike was a criminal, and was just using their money to build hotels and hostels all across Biafraland, they stopped contributing money to him. That was when he started the business of kidnapping proper. After he had kidnapped his fellow Biafrans and collected ransom on their heads, he will take pictures of them naked, using it to threaten them.
Many MASSOB members got tired of him and chased him out of his house in Okwe, Okigwe in Imo State. It was a gigantic building he built in his village, claiming that it was Biafra headquarters. But today he can no longer visit his home-town because MASSOB had chased him away and taken over the house. Apart from that, his townsmen and village people, who he stole their lands, have vowed to kill him if he dared visit home.
Right now, all his means of making illegal wealth has ceased; he started scavenging. That was why he grabbed with both hands Nigerian government’s offer for him to testify against Kanu in court. Interestingly, he has been throwing tantrums against Nnamdi Kanu and IPOB since he realized that there would not be any secret trial any longer. He has been calling Kanu and IPOB as a fraud when he is the one that is the fraud and blackleg in the Biafra struggle. Shame on you Uwazuruike!