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Published on Oct 3, 2018
Major-General Yakubu Gowon, the Nigerian head of state and commander-in-chief of the armed forces, calls on the secessionist state of Biafra to surrender in a speech on May 28th 1968.
He was speaking from his official residence, Dodan Barracks.
"I do not wish to say anything on this occasion that might be regarded as prejudicial to the peace talks now going on in Kampala, Uganda, but in the words of Mr. Asika (the civilian administrator of the newly created East-Central State), the rebel leaders ought to know when enough is enough. They should call a halt to the shameless deception of innocent Igbos with reports of fictitious victories on the battle-fronts. They should appreciate that the so-called diplomatic recognition by dubious characters, will not in the least alter the course of Nigerian history. It is sheer wickedness for Ojukwu and his clique to continue to goad innocent citizens to support the rebellion and lay down their lives for a cause that is not just. The rebel leaders know in their hearts of hearts, that all their false propaganda about genocide and massacre derives from personal ambition and the haunting fear of their own future ans safety, consequently they do not know when to stop.
I call on those who claim to love Nigeria and the Igbos, to face reality and advise the people of the East Central State to lay down their arms and return to the fold. It is not enough for organisations and individuals to ask the federal government to cease hostilities while ignoring the evil intentions of the rebels. I honestly believe it is in the true interests of the Igbos that they return to the fatherland. I am satisfied that all of the Nigerians have learnt the lesson of our most recent history and the current war and I pray that there will never be a repetition."