BIAFRA (nigeria)– A stay-at-home protest by Biafrans in Nigeria has crippled cities and towns in the south-east.
Streets are empty and markets, banks and schools are closed to mark the abortive attempt in 1967 to gain independence for the region.
It led to a bitter three-year civil war in which more than one million people were killed.
The authorities have warned Biafrans against street protests and security forces are on patrol.
South-eastern Nigeria is mainly inhabited by the ethnic Igbo community, who often complain of marginalisation – accusing successive governments of failing to develop their areas.
In the last few years, there have been a resurgence of support for a breakaway state of Biafra led by the banned group Indigenous People of Biafra (Ipob) and the Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra (Massob).
The southern oil city of Port Harcourt as well as parts of Abia state have also been affected by the stay-away.
Ipob leader Nnamdi Kanu is currently facing treason-related charges.
He has not been seen in public since last September when his house was raided by the Nigerian military. The army denies arresting him and his whereabouts are unknown.
First republic of Biafra was declared by Nigerian military officer Odumegwu-Ojukwu in 1967 who led his mainly ethnic Igbo forces into a deadly three-year civil war that ended in 1970. More than one million people lost their lives, mostly because of hunger.
Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK