Ben Bruce: Our terrible educational system is reason we can’t address Biafra agitation

Ben Murray-Bruce, senator representing Bayelsa east, says the country’s “terrible” educational system is a reason why Biafran agitation cannot be addressed.

Speaking on the floor of the senate while contributing to a motion on the country’s unity, Bruce said the country’s information policy “makes no sense” because it neglected the Nigerian civil war.

He said the country’s educational problems needed to be addressed because any other region of the country may agitate in the future.

The senator lamented that young Nigerians were not being educated about the civil war.

“We are here debating a subject that the educational system is not teaching and people do not understand it and the federal government of Nigeria do not recognise it. A fundamental problem is our educational system. We must address the problem at the source,” Bruce said.

“What is the problem? We are the problem. It is Biafra, it could be south-south tomorrow or north-east, it doesn’t matter. This must be addressed. Our educational is one of the worst I have ever seen in any where in the world, it is terrible, our policy of information makes no sense whatsoever and here we are talking about an impending crisis.

“Government should pay attention to history, there is a way out but to pretend or remove bight of Biafra from the map, nobody has the right to the bight of Biafra from the map, put it back on the map and let’s fix our problem.”

He said the reason other countries televise their history of wars is for mistakes not to be made in the future.

The senator said “absolutely nothing” has been done by the government to educate youths agitating for a secession.

“The reason they televise these wars is so that you can learn from the mistake of others, so that you do not become a fool and make the same mistakes and fight again. So, here we are, fifty years later talking about something that could be avoided if the federal government at the time understood the value of history,” he said.

“We erased the civil war from our consciousness, so generations of people do not know we fought the war or why we fought the war, they say the Igbos, were marginalised, right? But today they are the most industrious in the country, they are the richest Nigerians in the country today and amongst one of the most educated people.

“Yet they feel marginalised, if you compare, the Igbo man to other sectors of the society, you will say the Igbos are the privileged because of what we have. Yet, a generation of Igbos say they have been marginalised and they want to secede and want a nation.

“But what have we done as a nation to educate them on destruction and war – absolutely nothing. They don’t teach these in our history books. We do not tell our children what war is all about. Those talking about bloodshed have not even carried a gun.”