Between Radio Biafra And NBC | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Agenda, Opinion

Between Radio Biafra And NBC

Posted: Jul 22, 2015 at 4:54 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

It is quite surprising how all of a sudden the so-called illegal Radio Biafra reportedly being operated by Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, said to be resident in the United Kingdom, is increasingly becoming a source of serious concern to the government of President Muhammadu Buhari, a section of the Nigerian Online Media and some Nigerian elements who are wont to believe that Ndigbo must always dance to their tune or do what suits their thinking and/or act in line with their personal and group expectations – so as to be qualified to be called good citizens of Nigeria or, better still, nationalists. What a beautiful nonsense!

Similarly surprising is the rate at which the operator of this now all-important Radio Biafra, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, is being denigrated by the officials of the government of President Muhammadu Buhari and their retinue of parasitic sycophants.

Little wonder that while some of these officials now seem to be dissipating a lot of energy, time and resources striving to outdo one another in a bid to jam the signals of Radio Biafra, the security operatives are reportedly busy loafing around all nooks and crannies of the South-East and South-South geo-political zones searching for the sponsors of this pirate station.

The government, through the instrumentality of the National Broadcasting Commission, recently announced its success in jamming the signals of Radio Biafra.

According to Dr. Yemi Folashade Esan, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Information, “right now the signals from Radio Biafra have been jammed successfully by the NBC”. As pleasant as this remark sounds, there is no gainsaying that only time and events will give credibility to this claim.

Now let us dwell on the crux of the matter about the things believed to be said or done wrongly by Radio Biafra. First of all, apart from the media reports about the station’s pejorative reference to President Muhammadu Buhari as terrorist-in-Chief and sundry other names, which is roundly deplorable, could it be empirically wrong for rational minds in a sane society to think that the station’s metaphoric use of the word “zoo” or “zoological republic” in describing the degrading and appalling state of human existence in Nigeria today is really misplaced? For sure, this should as a matter of fact be the fundamental question of abiding concern to all of us, even as we continue to take a swipe at the general operations and content of the pirate radio station.

Funny enough, not even in the US nowadays would anybody take the lives of ordinary animals in just a day and in such a large number without the government swiftly unveiling its deadliest fangs of law enforcement in retaliation against the culprit.

In fact, no matter the things that we do or say against the Radio Biafra and its operator, Nnamdi Kanu, the point is that Nigeria cannot live in self-delusion forever.

Though it has always been easy for those who enjoy the privilege of being in the media or having access to the media to put in the public domain fierce polemics against peoples’ projects that are apparently antithetical to the interest they represent or protect. Yet it must be noted that the role of the media, whether print, electronic or online, on this issue of Radio Biafra should go beyond attacking the station. At the very best, there is need for caution, profound reflection and candid analysis on this issue. Like the British Broadcasting corporation (BBC) Hausa service which champions the cause of the Hausa people all over the world, it may not be out of place to say that the Radio Biafra fundamentally exists to serve and promote the cause and interest of the people of Igbo extraction both at home and in Diaspora.

To this end, it does not seem to make sense that Premium Times, an online media, in its July 10, 2015 Editorial, erroneously tried to equate the activities of Radio Biafra with Radio Television Libre des mille (RTLMC) that allegedly aided the massacre of 500,000 Rwandans during the 1994 genocide in Rwanda. Truth be told, there is hardly any station which caters and propagates solely the cause of a nation that does not err from time to time in terms of providing controversial content to its listeners.

What is more, if indeed Radio Biafra is illegal on account of the pronouncement by Dr. Yemi Folashade Esan, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Information, merely because the station does not have a licence obtained from Nigerian government to be on her airwaves, then it stands to question if the BBC, Voice of America, Radio Deutsche welle and their ilk that freely operate on our airwaves do so because they are issued with Nigerian government’s licences or basically because of their ownership, possession and use of superior technology/technical knowhow.

Be that as it may, it is high time the government left Radio Biafra alone and mind its business of governance, especially as it concerns its efforts in containing the unabated offensive being launched daily by the Boko Haram insurgents. Endlessly chasing shadow in the guise of fighting to jam the signals of Radio Biafra will only continue to attract more attention and listenership for the radio station. This is why it is imperative for President Muhammadu Buhari to start addressing cases of injustice, inequality and inequity (which abound in our polity) against the people of the enclave whose cause and interest the pirate radio station claims to be pursuing. This is one major way of making the vast majority of the people concerned think and act less for and in defence of Radio Biafra.