Major Chukwuma Kaduna Nzeogwu died in the last seven day of July 1967. While there is consensus that he died, precisely how he died and because of whom has stayed in the contest. In conspiracy overflowing Nigeria, all way of bits of gossip and apocryphal stories have affirmed that Nzeogwu was killed in a Machiavellian plot designed by Ojukwu to dispense with him or maybe that he was killed while attempting to abscond to join the federal armed force. As usual, in all actuality considerably more ordinary.
Nzeogwu in Prison
For his function in Nigeria’s first military coup, Nzeogwu was detained by the military system of Major-General Aguiyi-Ironsi at the notorious Kiri-Kiri greatest security jail in Lagos. His co-conspirators were additionally at first kept there yet huge numbers of them were later moved to detainment facilities in the Eastern Region: including Majors Ifeajuna (Uyo jail), Ademoyega, Onwuatuegwu (Enugu jail), Captain Gbulie (Abakaliki jail), Major Chukwuka, Captain Nwobosi (both Owerri jail). Nzeogwu was the main official among the plotters that was moved to Aba jail. After Ironsi was ousted in July 1966, Nzeogwu stayed in jail until he was delivered in March 1967 by the Eastern Region’s Military Governor Lt-Colonel Ojukwu.
Nzeogwu’s Rift With Ojukwu
Anyway, after his delivery, his exercises were diminished. He and Ojukwu didn’t agree. Nzeogwu was never enthusiastic about severance. As late as 1967 he explained in a meeting with Dennis Ejindu his view that:
severance will be ill-advised, without a doubt unimaginable. Regardless of whether the East fights a battle of withdrawal and wins, it still can’t withdraw. By and by, I don’t care for severance and if this country disintegrates, I will get together my things and go. In the current circumstances, confederation is the most appropriate answer as a brief measure. In time, we will have complete solidarity.
The meeting didn’t go down well with Ojukwu and Nzeogwu’s words to Ejindu were the last official explanations credited to him before his passing. Relations among Ojukwu and Nzeogwu disintegrated further as Nzeogwu made no mystery of his craving for an assembled Nigeria.
Even though battle among Nigeria and Biafra was inescapable, in April 1967 Nzeogwu was suspended from all military exercises by Ojukwu. The quick affection was Nzeogwu’s inclusion in a fight reenactment military preparing exercise in Abakaliki and different towns in the Eastern Region. Reviewing that Nzeogwu had turned the evening preparing “Exercise Damissa” into an all-out coup the earlier year, Ojukwu prohibited all such further activities.
Relations among Ojukwu and Kaduna Nzeogwu got awful enough for Ojukwu to consider returning Nzeogwu to jail.
In a June 17, 1967 letter to his companion Olusegun Obasanjo, Nzeogwu confessed:
“You have no uncertainty heard a ton of bits of gossip about my relations with Ojukwu. We clearly observe things distinctively after what he did to my allies in January 1966. He is additionally stressed over my popularity among his kin. I was to be returned to jail, yet he feared repercussions. At the present time I am not permitted contact with troops nor am I allowed to work on the staff. One noble man’s understanding we have is that I can continue with whatever satisfies me.”
Amazingly even at this late stage, Nzeogwu was still engaging dreams of Nigerian solidarity and reintegrating the Nigerian armed force: “I will make another Nigerian armed force inside Biafra!! With Igbo, Hausa, Yoruba and all other ethnic gatherings.”
Major Kaduna Nzeogwu roused and terrified with an equivalent measure. A character clique verging on saint love grew up around him in the Eastern Region and he was being feted as a godlike indestructible fighter. In spite of the fact that Ojukwu gave Nzeogwu the Biafran rank of Brigadier, he was not provided with any conventional command in the Biafran armed force.
Regardless of not authoritatively being the aspect of the Biafran armed force command, Nzeogwu was not the sort of character that could stay inactive. His incautious nature and defiance towards unrivalled officials has been reported
. Lt-Col Patrick Anwunah ventured to such an extreme as to depict Nzeogwu as:
“an extremist and an internally rebellious youthful official… ..(who was) loaded with his own thoughts and likely idea he had the responses to all issues. His announcements and comments around then gave me the feeling that he could become rebellious as he had no respect for senior officials.”
Frustrated at his rejection from military obligations, Nzeogwu took to casual specially appointed guerilla assaults against the federal armed force. He would indiscreetly conscript different fighters to go along with him during these assaults. It isn’t sure that these strikes and conscriptions were approved by Ojukwu.
Nzeogwu was appreciated and dreaded in equivalent measure. He was appreciated for his insight, warmth and appeal. He was dreaded due to his suicidal courage. Junior Biafran troopers were hesitant to be conscripted by Nzeogwu. Conscription by Nzeogwu implied being taken to the cutting edge and confronted with a grave threat. Nzeogwu was daring enough to cross behind foe lines, complete reconnaissance and draw in the federal armed force in close-quarter combat. In late July 1967, his courage made him a stride excessively far.
The Death of Kaduna Nzeogwu
Nzeogwu had gone out on a reconnaissance mission in the Nsukka segment. He was going in an extemporized protected vehicle (known as a “Biafran Red Devil”) that had been converted by the smart Biafran engineers from a Bedford truck. The vehicle was cumbersome in spite of its great inventiveness. The vehicle became immobilized and was encircled by federal soldiers of the 21st unit at a barricade close to the University of Nigeria Nsukka grounds. The soldiers were driven by Captain Abubakar Gora, and they started shooting at it. The vehicle’s ad-libbed reinforcement withstood their projectiles until it was assaulted with the fearsome 106mm recoilless rifle which pierced its body. Unexpectedly, the 106mm recoilless rifle was a similar enemy of tank weapons that Nzeogwu and different warriors utilized in January 1966 to assault and wreck the official cabin of the Sardauna of Sokoto.
Now, the accounts separate. Olu Mamdap (previous military driver to General Domkat Bali) saw the episode and cases that Nzeogwu and the other “a few” tenants in the vehicle were killed while still inside the vehicle. Mandap claims that it was not realized that Nzeogwu was inside until the corpses were hauled out.
Nonetheless, Major-Generals Mohammed Shuwa and Abdullahi Shelleng (who were absent when Nzeogwu was killed yet observed his corpse) asserted that while being discharged on, Nzeogwu leapt out from the vehicle, yelled in Hausa and identified himself as Major Nzeogwu however was shot dead at any rate. Ojukwu’s blended race stepbrother Tom Biggar was additionally killed alongside Nzeogwu. Biggar was the offspring of Ojukwu’s mom after she separated from Sir Louis Odumegwu and wedded an European named Biggar.
Nzeogwu’s corpse was identified by Lieutenant Abdullahi Shelleng who requested that it ought to be put away right off the bat in the University of Nigeria grounds at Nsukka. In any case, when Shelleng showed up, Nzeogwu’s eyes had been culled out in what seems to have been custom mutilation. According to Shelleng the officer who shot Nzeogwu was incidentally Nzeogwu’s previous batman. The corpse was later shipped off 1 division base camp in Makurdi where the 1 division commander Colonel Mohammed Shuwa educated the head regarding state Major-General Gowon. In spite of the way that Nzeogwu was present, an aggressor killed in combat against the Nigerian armed force, Gowon requested that Nzeogwu’s body ought to be travelled to Kaduna and covered with full military distinctions – even as the war seethed on in the Eastern Region.
Indeed, even in death, Nzeogwu was still regarded by federal and northern soldiers. Domkat Bali alluded to him as:
“a pleasant, charismatic and trained official, profoundly appreciated and regarded by his colleagues. In any event, he was not prone to be found in the company of ladies all the time wrecking about with them in the official’s wreck, a side interest of numerous youthful officials at that point. we accepted that he was a truly patriotic official who composed the 196
6 coup with good motives who was let somewhere around his collaborators…. If we had caught him alive, he would not have been killed. I accept the likely would have been pursued his part in the January 15 coup, imprisoned and presumably liberated after some time. His death was deplorable.”