All you need to know about the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB)
Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) believes that the Lands and Communities of Biafra and Biafraland belong to Biafrans going back centuries with historical ancient cultural ties.
They also believe that Biafrans are under occupation, servitude and face modern-day slavery under the Hausa-Fulani controlled Nigerian establishment.
- What is Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB)?
- When was the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) formed?
- Who were the founders of Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB)?
- Who are the Indigenous People of Biafra?
- Where was Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) founded?
- How is the leadership Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) structured?
- How are Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) Country Coordinators selected?
- What are IPOB Zones?
- How did Nnamdi Kanu end up becoming the leader of Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB)?
- How did the IPOB get to grow so fast?
- Where are all the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) chapters in the world?
- Is the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) a terrorist organization?
- Are Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) members and Biafrans still being persecuted by the government of Nigeria?
What is Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB)?
Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) is an organization that represents the social, political, and economic interests of Biafrans in Nigeria and in diaspora.
IPOB has chapters in every major country across the globe.
When was the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) formed?
The IPOB was founded in 2013 by a group of elders in Germany. Subsequently Nnamdi Kanu was pronounced so that he can use his platform to lead the movement globally. This facilitated the continuation of Radio Biafra, which had stopped broadcasting in 2009 due to financial difficulties.
Who were the founders of Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB)?
Dr. Fredrick Onyeali can actually be considered as the father of the IPOB organization.
He conceived the idea of forming an organisation to represent Biafrans and convened a meeting with interested Biafrans in Germany (who eventually ended up being stakeholders in IPOB the organization). This meeting resulted into the formation of what is now known as IPOB under the leadership of Nnamdi Kanu.
Because of his interest in the issue of Biafra Restoration Dr. Fredrick Onyeali while collaborating with Nnamdi Kanu brought the idea to form an organisation. He convened a meeting with few interested Biafrans in Germany and from that meeting came what we know today as IPOB under the leadership of Nnamdi Kanu.
IPOB was formed in Germany in 2013 and that is how Dr. Fredrick Onyeali became the first ever IPOB Country Coordinator in Germany and the first ever National Coordinator worldwide. At the time IPOB only operated in Germany.
The 5 Biafrans who were involved in the formation of the IPOB in Germany were:
1. Dr. Fredrick Onyeali
The first ever Country Coordinator of IPOB Germany
2. Onyekachukwu Ezemba
The first Public Relations Officer and Communications director of IPOB worldwide (Ezemba can be credited with pronouncing Nnamdi Kanu as the leader of IPOB in 2013 in addition to his position as the Director of Radio Biafra London. He subsequently helped Nnamdi Kanu realize the potential he had to lead the IPOB through his already established Radio Biafra network globally)
3. Collins Chinedu
He became the first Zonal Coordinator of Hamburg, Germany and is the current National Coordinator of IPOB Germany
5. Obinna Eze
Who are the Indigenous People of Biafra?
The indigenous people of Biafra are people from Igboland, Anang, Igbanke, Igala, Idoma, Ijaw, Efik, Itsekiri Uhrobo and more ethnic groups within the former territory of Biafra with the Igbos making up a majority of the supporters.
The Igbo ethnic group accounts for over 50 million people, or about 15% of the country’s population.
Where was Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) founded?
The IPOB was founded in Germany in 2013. It subsequently went global through the leadership of Nnamdi Kanu who doubles also as the Director of Radio Biafra London
He used his Radio Biafra global network to bring the IPOB message globally thereby ensuring that the organization would thrive.
How is the leadership Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) structured?
The management of IPOB in each country is autonomous but the global policy is dictated by a well organized leadership structure.
The leadership structure is made up of:
- The IPOB leader
- The IPOB Deputy leader
- Directorate of State (DOS) – The DOS is led by a Head of Directorate and Deputy Head of
- 5 Directorate of State members – representing the Europe, Africa, South America, North America,and Asia)
- Country National Coordinators – IPOB has membership in 53 countries
- Country Zonal Coordinator – Within each country there are zones
How are Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) Country Coordinators selected?
Presently the National Coordinators of IPOB are selected by the leadership of IPOB and on some occasions the members are permitted by the global leadership to choose the leadership from among themselves. The chosed National Coordinator is thensubject to the IPOB global leadership.
What are IPOB Zones?
Besides the National presence of IPOB in different Countries, there are smaller units of IPOB in different cities within each country.
In Germany there are about 27 IPOB Zones. That means the presence of IPOB in 27 cities in Germany.
Onyekachukwu Ezemba, the first Public Relations Officer of IPOB Germany initiated the idea of creating IPOB zones by creating the initial 9 IPOB Zones in 2013 each with a Zonal Coordinator.
Hamburg IPOB Zone was the first ever IPOB Zone created worldwide followed by München (Munich) IPOB Zone.
Today there are hundreds of IPOB Zones worldwide.
How did Nnamdi Kanu end up becoming the leader of Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB)?
In 2013 Onyekachukwu Ezemba who was the first Public Relations Officer and Communications director of IPOB (which was then only operating in Germany) pronounced Nnamdi Kanu as the Leader of IPOB on Radio Biafra.
Ezemba in collaboration with the founding members of IPOB helped Nnamdi Kanu realize the potential he had to leader the IPOB through his already established Radio Biafra network globally
How did the IPOB get to grow so fast?
The leadership role of Nnamdi Kanu and the global range of Radio Biafra Broadcasting coupled with the desire to restore Biafra in the blood of every Biafran were the catalysts for the global growth of the IPOB. His arrest shed light on the rampant marginalization.
After the pronouncement of Nnamdi Kanu as the leader of IPOB, Biafrans in Nigeria and in diaspora had a reason to be hopeful. His arrest generated a lot of anger nationally and internationally towards the Nigerian government. Biafrans in Nigerian and in diaspora mistrusted the treatment of Nnamdi Kanu after his arrest for dubious charges.
Where are all the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) chapters in the world?
IPOB currently has chapters in the following countries:
- Czech Republic
- Hong Kong
- Ivory Coast
- New Zealand
- South Africa
- South Korea
- Trinidad and Tobago
- United Arab Emirates
- United Kingdom
- Unites State of America
Is the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) a terrorist organization?
The struggle for Biafra today is led by Nnamdi Kanu who has been the head of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) since 2013.
IPOB calls for the secession of the region from Nigeria. Nigeria today is considered corrupt and alien to Biafran beliefs.
In September of 2017 the IPOB organization was designated as a terrorist organization by the Nigerian Government.
IPOB is an organization that emerged in 2013 as a result of campaigns in favor of independence and that has achieved, through the radio station Radio Biafra, the transmission of protest messages against the Nigerian government to all Biafrans and supporters in Nigeria and in diaspora.
Most Biafrans listen to the station clandestinely as many of the broadcast messages contain politically controversial statements. Despite this, the spirit of the IPOB organization is characterized by a struggle based on non-violence and possible acts of violence are, on all occasions, in defense of the minority they represent.
Are Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) members and Biafrans still being persecuted by the government of Nigeria?
Nigeria has since held steadfast that there will be no negotiations with IPOB and other pro-Biafra organizations. President Muhammadu Buhari reiterated in July of 2017 that the division of the Nigeria was not negotiable and would not be taken into consideration.
The IPOB leader was attacked in his home by the Nigerian military on Sept 14th 2017 and 28 unarmed and defenceless members of IPOB were brutally murdered by the Nigerian military. Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of IPOB narrowly escaped death. He subsequently absconded the October 2017 trial. Ever since, the Nigeria government has beed interested in killing him than delivering justice. He was later convicted in absentia of treason and conspiracy.
To this day, and despite all the legal difficulties he faces, the leader of the movement insists on calling a referendum to approve the independence of Biafra. Paradoxically, it has been the military repression of his movement and his arrest that have caused his public image to be more popular and social protests are agitated.
Amnesty International declared that the country’s security forces, led by the military, launched a repressive campaign against peaceful pro-Biafra protesters. The government of Nigeria has been accused of using extreme violence and extrajudicial executions carried out in different marches and demonstrations.