Opinion

Adamu Garba must apologize, UNN can’t be renamed after Queen that bombed it down, By Ikenna Emewu 

Adamu Garba, the one that claimed he was a presidential aspirant on Friday took to the worst gaffe in the exercise of his right to free speech to ever suggest renaming the University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) after the late British Queen Elizabeth II.

 

There is actually the right of being adrift, and Garba lived it in that insulting and misguided statement via his Twitter handle.

 

But even with such right of his in this shifty thinking, he owes all Great Lions and Lionesses an apology for ever saying or suggesting that the great UNN be renamed after the deceased Queen Elizabeth II of England.

 

On what logic or illogic was such odd suggestion based on?

 

Is UNN the only university in Nigeria or what informed his choice when there are many institutions even in his Katsina State that can be used for such experiment?

 

Maybe, he possibly just wanted to be heard saying something. Garba has no business whatsoever with UNN. It’s not his alma mater, and he saying that means denigrating UNN that wasn’t founded by Elizabeth or the colonizers.

 

In case he does not know, UNN was founded by the Great Zik via the Eastern Nigerian government in 1955.

 

Garba should get it clear in his mind that Zik built UNN in affiliation with the University of the State of Michigan that provided the expert advise. UNN has nothing to do with the British colonizers.

In fact, the war planes Harold Wilson, the UK Prime Minister, and Elizabeth II sent to commit genocide in Biafra bombed UNN to smithereens during the Nigeria Biafra war. Knowing such facts, you can examine how hurting and insulting his statement is, and I assume he knows that history of the bloodbath in UNN spearheaded by the deceased monarch.

 

The scars of the bombings are still there on Zik’s Onuiyi Haven he deliberately left to build a new one.

 

Another was still there on the burnt out scars of the Princess Alexandria Auditorium before Umaru Gomwalk as Sole Administrator, not VC, rebuilt it in the early 1990s.

 

Another is there up on the Green Hills at the back of the agric faculty farms where the Radio Biafra built and operated by the students was located.

 

The spot on which the George Marion Johnson Building (GS Building) sits was a mass grave where victims of the wicked bombings on the campus were buried.

 

On a particular sad day, Prof Amaefuna, now deceased, of the Fine Arts Department who was a pioneer student of UNN told us, his students the story.

Prof Amaefuna said he fought in the war and the spot the building stands was a point victims of the bombing by Nigerian forces who operated planes sent by Britain and manned by pilots the Queen and the PM sent Nigeria were interred.

The St. John Anglican Church building, the chapel of the university, also destroyed with bombs is still standing there within the precincts of the Zik’s Flats Hostels. It is there as another sore reminder.

 

Garba has all the rights to rename himself and his town after Elizabeth as he admitted he loves and adores her that much, never my UNN built by Eastern Nigeria government that has nothing to do with coloniser British government.

In 1991, people like Adamu Garba tried the trick to rename UNN after Zik who founded it and name the one just founded in Abuja as University of Nigeria and it failed woefully.

 

Even Zik himself told IBB never to try it. His logic that defeated IBB was arguing that it didn’t make any sense to remove the name Nigeria and replace it with his personal name.

 

Now, someone who claims to have some grey matter in his skull wants the name Nigeria deleted for Elizabeth’s name.

He really needs to apologize for that gaffe or deliberate intention to rub salt in an open sore left by the queen to name an institution she mobilized forces to destroy after her.

 

That Garba has a Twitter handle doesn’t mean he should use it without some dint of common sense.

 

The blood of those innocent victims of the cruel bombing will rise in protest of such travesty that should never be contemplated.

 

Even the rebuilding of UNN promised by Yakubu Gowon was never implemented.

That is the reason only UNN among all universities in the world has what they call prefab blocks made of planks defacing the campus.

 

They were built by Gowon as the promised rehabilitation of the university he bombed down, a travesty indeed.

Now, someone wants UNN obliterated from history as the last effort.

 

If Garba doesn’t know the history of UNN, he should ask questions before even imagining such insult on all products of that university and all persons that contributed to the founding, including all the states of former eastern Nigeria today.

 

Adamu Garba must apologize for that insult.

 

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